Mumbai Indians v Kings XI Punjab, IPL 2011, Mumbai May 2, 2011

Ruthless Mumbai surge to sixth win


Mumbai Indians 159 for 5 (Rayudu 51, Tendulkar 51) beat Kings XI Punjab 136 for 8 (Marsh 61, Munaf 2-18, Malinga 2-19)
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

If Sachin Tendulkar doesn't get you, Ambati Rayudu will. If Lasith Malinga doesn't get you, Harbhajan Singh will. Unfortunately for Kings XI Punjab, all four men were on top of their game today, and the rest of the Mumbai Indians XI was ruthlessly efficient. Tendulkar played within himself, Rayudu launched the occasional sortie and the middle order kept up the momentum to lift Mumbai to 159. It was a gettable target on this pitch, but not against this attack.

Harbhajan and Malinga cracked open the game in their opening spells. Harbhajan nailed Adam Gilchrist on the sweep in the opening over, before Malinga put Paul Valthaty in his place with an over of pace-bowling brilliance. He began with a full ball that was through Valthaty in a blink. The second was a swerving full toss at 144.5 kph that Valthaty barely managed to get bat to. The third was faster, and Valthaty nervously glanced to fine-leg, but he was back on strike for the last two. Malinga let him have two short balls; Valthaty did not pick the first one, and missed a feeble attempt at a pull off the second. Valthaty, clearly outclassed, was stunned into his shell and Punjab never recovered.

Tendulkar smelled blood, and went for all-out attack. Malinga bowled with two slips, while Harbhajan trotted in with a slip and a silly point. Valthaty continued to struggle, but Shaun Marsh managed to sneak a couple of boundaries off Malinga. Abu Nechim kept the pressure on Valthaty, who was so late on a pull in the fifth over that he ended up playing it uppishly to cover. Cover is not where a pull shot should go, neither is it the place for Munaf Patel to field: he grassed the catch, tumbling forward. Unfortunately for Punjab, that was the only fielding error from Mumbai.

After dawdling to 8 off his first 24 balls, Valthaty eventually found respite against the back-up bowlers. He carted T Suman and Andrew Symonds for sixes, but holed out soon after. Marsh was in his groove by then, charming a Munaf half-volley for four and clattering a half-tracker from Nechim to midwicket, but he needed someone to hold up the other end.

Mumbai ensured that did not happen: David Hussey was held spectacularly at long-on by Rohit Sharma, who hurtled forward and dived full-length. Dinesh Karthik was trapped in front by Kieron Pollard, and Abhishek Nayar allowed the entry 'c Symonds b Harbhajan' to enter the scorecard. Malinga tied up the loose ends in his second spell.

Earlier, Mumbai were efficient rather than excellent with the bat, as Punjab's spinners held them back in an attritional first half. Punjab were clearly looking to capitalise on Tendulkar's weakness against left-arm spin, when they opened the attack with Bhargav Bhatt. Bipul Sharma took over for the third over, and struck with his unusual trajectory from well wide of the crease. Davy Jacobs was lazy leaning out to one of those deliveries, and turned his wrists too early as the ball slipped through to hit the stumps. The early dismissal forced Mumbai to rebuild cautiously, and the left-arm gambit had paid off though Tendulkar hadn't fallen for it.

Rayudu attempted to break free with a couple of against-the-spin heaves, while Tendulkar skipped inside the line to sweep Bhatt over deep square leg, but Mumbai showed their first real sign of intent only in the 12th over of the innings. As always, Praveen Kumar was cannon fodder once the shine disappeared from the ball, and Rayudu clubbed him for two fours and a six off consecutive balls. Punjab did not help their own cause, dropping Rayudu twice in two balls. The second a comical error in judgement from Ryan Harris at long-off, that allowed Rayudu reach his half-century.

Rayudu and Tendulkar fell soon after getting to their half-centuries, but Pollard ensured there was no let-up, smashing two sixes and in the process increasing his tournament tally by a factor of five. His closing surge, aided by Rohit, took Mumbai to a score that Punjab would have fancied chasing, but Malinga and Co. had other plans.

Nitin Sundar is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Finn on May 3, 2011, 23:34 GMT

    Shaun Marsh batting for Cameron White's one-day spot? If the selectors aren't watching then they need to be, as an Englishman I'll admit he's very good. I think Mumbai should consider maybe moving Rayudu up to open and bringing Henriques/Blizzard for a go as Jacobs isn't in great form really and Rayudu can keep wicket apart from that they look very solid.

  • M Vivek on May 3, 2011, 13:33 GMT

    mumbai ll lose the eliminator

  • Dummy4 on May 3, 2011, 13:04 GMT

    Rayudu was not out. DK didn't catch it cleanly. He grounded the ball when not in control of the catch yet no one picked this during the game. 1st Tendulkar given out to a no-ball agaisnt DC n now this! MI supporters don't mind as long as we win but this is poor from the 3rd umpire whose standards have really fallen lately.

  • Lakmal on May 3, 2011, 12:50 GMT

    It's funny watching Malinga bowling to IPL batsmen.Batsmen hop,dance,jump...funny...He showed Valthaty what professional bowling really means.Valthaty was fully afraid yesterday.

  • Dummy4 on May 3, 2011, 9:12 GMT

    batting line is very good..Rohit sharma can change the game so he should be partner of sachin tendukar as a second opener..

  • Dummy4 on May 3, 2011, 5:39 GMT

    decent batting great bowling n some xtra ordinary catches help mumbai ...but still d likes of pollard n jacobs have to fire , in big games 160 on dis pitch nvr a match winning one but hats off to marsh he is really playing so well..but ends up on the losing side. feels happy to be on top again...go mumbai go...

  • Madan on May 3, 2011, 4:39 GMT

    marsh has been truly sensational in all the editions of the ipl that he has played in.An avg of over 60 in the ipl is truly superb. Having said that, it was a clinical show by mumbai again. However they face the danger of a batting collapse like against the royals if the top order is knocked off cheaply. rohit should bat at no.4(pollard has to come at no.5 or no.6). munaf has been the unsung hero so far and slinga and bhajji are amazing to watch these days. probably, it's time for mumbai to win the ipl this time around! go mumbai! go!

  • R on May 3, 2011, 3:38 GMT

    We have noticed that Sachin takes time to attack on opponent and till then wicket is fallen. Well he should start from the word go rather than slowing run rate and loosing wickets. We have seen that they take 5/6 overs to attack and till then they loose 1/2 wickets and we always end up being short with 20/30 runs. Fielding is good as well as bowling but we need to improve top order and middle order batting work properly.I am happy to see mumbai back on top. Love MI.

  • Dummy4 on May 3, 2011, 2:42 GMT

    MI continues its amzing form. But the question is, why are they not giving chances to Mumbai uncapped players even though they are keen to play Sathish,Suman and Rayadu who from other states. Is it fair for a great city like Mumbai? When players like Rayadu,Ashwin,Manish,Tiwary emerge through IPL window Mumbai uncapped players do not get the equal opportunity. Is winning the championship at any cost is the only goal? Can they recruit Symonds who was dropped from Australian squad for indiscipline. Will any corporate do it? Can Malinga be a role model for young Arjun (son of Sachin)? Will he ask him to emulate the Malinga's near throw action?Can Pollard use such a heavy bat and kill the bowlers? Should there be restriction on the weight / thickness of the bat? Can bhajji making obsecne gestures after taking a uncapped domestic players? is it fair? MI may win the IPL 2011 but I feel they are taking cricket in the wrong direction and only "God"should introspect and keep the game alive.

  • Dummy4 on May 2, 2011, 22:11 GMT

    JP Duminy avg 15.40 SR 114.92 , Dilshan avg 20 SR 103.44 and Dravid avg 25.14 SR 97.77 (below 100) have been the biggest disapponting performers of this IPL JH Kallis avg 35.00 SR 111.36 who opens with DRAVID on same pitch has much better stats..........That shows the ,imitations of Dravid and shows that he was the liability on INDIAN team and the reason of their avg performance in ODIs. The moment India got rid of him and they begun winnning ODIs........Similarly J.P Duminy was a liability on MI the moment they got rid of him they too have begun winning. J.P was liablility on SA too in the WC.............

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