Mumbai Indians v Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2015, Mumbai May 14, 2015

Mumbai stay alive with last-over thriller

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Mumbai Indians 171 for 4 (Pandya 61*, Shakib 2-22) beat Kolkata Knight Riders 166 for 7 (Yusuf 52, Gambhir 38, Pollard 1-6) by 5 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

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O'Brien: Bowling to left-hander worked for Pollard

Rohit Sharma's decision to give Kieron Pollard the final over proved a masterstroke, as the medium-pacer kept his nerve to defend 12 runs. He bowled three successive dot balls in the end with Piyush Chawla swinging aimlessly, as Mumbai Indians won by five runs at the Wankhede Stadium.

While Mumbai moved into the top four with the win, Knight Riders could have confirmed a spot in the playoffs with a victory, but they went off track in the last five overs.

Fifty runs were needed off the last five overs but Yusuf Pathan's half-century had reduced it down to 12 off the final over. But he fell off the first ball to Pollard and although Umesh Yadav struck a four next ball, Chawla failed to connect with the ball as he kept swinging across the line.

All Mumbai bowlers, except Hardik Pandya, took a wicket each. Pandya had earlier played a superb innings to keep Mumbai in the game by propelling them to 171 for 4. Mumbai's innings derived most of its strength from the 92-run unbroken stand between Pollard and Pandya for the fifth wicket. The pair got together at the loss of Rohit in the 12th over, and accelerated with 72 runs in the last five overs.

Pandya smashed two sixes over midwicket and eight fours in his unbeaten 31-ball 61. He not just outscored Pollard, who made 33 off 38 balls with just a four and a six, but dominated their partnership. Pandya struck Umesh for four consecutive fours in the 17th over before launching into Andre Russell in the 19th over for two fours and a six, reaching his first IPL fifty, off 25 balls.

Shakib Al Hasan's two early wickets kept Mumbai from getting a brisk start. He first removed Parthiv Patel when he chipped to midwicket for Manish Pandey to take an easy catch. Pandey added to his tally after he held on to a chance offered by the other Mumbai opener, Lendl Simmons, in the sixth over. Shakib, then, took his second wicket, that of Ambati Rayudu for 2, Russell taking a superb catch at wide long-off.

Rohit kept the score moving with singles and doubles, and added boundaries in the ninth over against Chawla, a cut and a sweep. But he was undone for his 21-ball 30, by a beauty from Sunil Narine who got the ball to curve after pitching it on middle stump.

Shakib's 2 for 22 aside, Knight Riders would have been displeased by how Umesh and Russell bowled towards the end while also getting only one over out of Chawla.

Knight Riders began their chase of 172 with lots of boundaries but Robin Uthappa's attempt to get cheeky resulted in him being caught at short fine leg by Lasith Malinga, soon after hitting Harbhajan Singh for a six over square leg. Pandey's poor call for a single two balls later made it 46 for 2 in the eventful sixth over.

Gambhir and Yusuf added 42 runs quickly before the Knight Riders captain was bowled by J Suchith, the next ball after being dropped on 36 by Pandya at deep midwicket. Yusuf kept playing second fiddle as Shakib hammered 23 off 15 balls but he too fell in the pursuit of boundaries, caught off Vinay Kumar in the 15th over.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Harsh on May 16, 2015, 8:13 GMT

    Kolkata just faltered on the brink of victory,lacking that crucial thrust to win a game in a tense finish.Gautam Gambhir recklessly threw his wicket when Kolkata looked on song to victory.Few matches could better illustrate the importance of being able to be at one's absolute best in the closing stages of a game,where Kolkata failed when bowling and batting.

    Overall it was one of I.P.L's best games with the ebb and flow continuously changing in either direction.At every Juncture when Kolkata looked on top Mumbai maid vital inroads .For a neutral fan cricket was the winner.On this form I find it difficult to envisage Kolkata winning the title or reaching the final.

  • Dummy4 on May 16, 2015, 1:04 GMT

    The persons that chooses MOM needs to be fair in their choice

  • Dummy4 on May 15, 2015, 16:27 GMT

    @Junaid Ansari Agree and disagree with you. I would like to give your answer back in terms of football. YOu could lose one game 20-0 which brings your goal difference down. Similarly....in cricket, you could have a few days where u out-do the others by a huge margin and manage to get the run rate up. At times you cannot. And when/if it rains, nobody can do anything. So if the format focusses on points then it is true with them. I do feel though that if it rains, they could play the game the next day. But then because the schedule is so cramped and flight arrangements have been done way before hand, these things have to just be taken in stride and at some point just accepted. Good luck to all teams. Let the sport win.

  • Krishen on May 15, 2015, 15:09 GMT

    There is no question of discrediting anybody. The issue is optimising results as a captain. for a given team for India. Azhar & Ganguly have been great batsman & good captains for India & deserve great respect. Azhar has been the best ever all round fielder ( including in slips ) for India. They had far superior & experienced team members in their prime than MS Dhoni. IND would have won many more trophies / series/ matches with those teams & Dhoni as captain. Dhoni has achieved far greater team success with relatively weaker teams.

  • amit on May 15, 2015, 14:19 GMT

    forExcelienceInCricket: Nice view. But, please do not discredit Azhar as a captian. He lacked a finisher in his setup else India would ve won many more ODIs under him. Plus, it was under him that talents like Srinath, Kumble, Sachin really flourished. Though, he wasn't outwardly aggressive, but his on field decisions were otherwise. After him, Sourav took the team to new heights. He was also good at utilizing talents to maximum, be it Yuvi, or bhajji, or only 4 bowlers with RD as Wicketkeeper. For, Dhoni, I ve seldom seen him operate with 4 bowlers. For MSD, its actually he himself as a batsman who has defined many a ODIs. If a MSD was in Azhar's or Ganguly's team, well, we would ve won a few more WC. At least one of 1996,99 or 03. Though i agree with u on what u said for Virat and Rohit.

  • Madan on May 15, 2015, 13:35 GMT

    thriller of a match in Mumbai... Pollard redeemed himself in the final over with that massive pressure... great to see hardik pandya do well at this level- hopefully he doesn't become another Paul valthaty! I think Rohit makes for a great skipper - he seems to score better when he s the captain and he is also aggressive in his field placements which is sorely lacked by dhoni these days...

  • Krishen on May 15, 2015, 13:00 GMT

    IND has generally struggled to pick the right captain over the last 4 decades..We had the greats like Gavaskar & Kapil for brief periods when some great successes were achieved. After their stint as captains IND never picked the right captain till 2007. As a result IND underachieved in all forms of cricket during the period 1990 to 2007 despite at times having outstanding combination of players. As a result player achievements/ preferences received more focus. It is rather ironical the best ever Indian captain's ( in all forms of cricket ) selection in 2007 was facilitated by a non Indian. Dhoni's success as captain has more to do with calm leadership, respect for the game & opponents. performance under pressure & focus on team goals, fitness, fielding. Both Virat & Rohit have played enough cricket & are crucial for IND's success but lack mental toughness as a leader. IND needs to try Pujara / Ashwin / Vijay as test captain. This may never happen given the support for Virat & Rohit.

  • MadR on May 15, 2015, 11:01 GMT

    What a match. Mumbai would be happy that they won this match by a wisker but they would do themselves a favour by improving their fielding. Poor glove work from Parthiv saw a single being conceded and Pathan hoisted the next ball against Malinga into the stands. Come the last over and Malinga misfields the ball and it goes for four, awkward spin of the ball should not be an excuse at this level. Then comes the match-winning knock by Chawla for Mumbai Indians - A cracking 1 of 7 balls! MI should buy Chawla in the next auction for giving them an oppurtunity to qualify for the playoffs.

  • Himanshu on May 15, 2015, 10:37 GMT

    Captaincy is something which has a lot to do with experience. Dhoni has a captaincy experience of around 8 years. He has captained in all formats of the game, be it the bigger format or the shorter one. He has to be a better captain than Kohli and Rohit today. During these 8 years, Dhoni too has done his share of blunders in the captaincy. Even today he's not a perfect captain. One can easily spot his tactical mistakes in many of the games. Comparatively, Rohit and Kohli have little experience to back them. They'll get some tactics wrong, but it's the mistakes from where a captain, or anyone in general learns. They're in a learning stage right now and it'll be totally unfair to compare them with someone who has truckloads of experience behind him.

  • ESPN on May 15, 2015, 9:15 GMT

    only rohit and virat from the current lot are players who'll play next 10 years for india...these are pure match winners. other are ony impact players like rahane , raina..... as far as the captaincy is concerned...give kohli sometime . dont judge him so early and every individual has different behaviour.....so wat kohli is not like dhoni....mind u dhoni was not like ganguly too.

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