Mumbai Indians (MI) ended their run of fixtures in Chennai with a matchup against Punjab Kings (PBKS). A tight bowling performance combined with composure by the top order with the bat pushed PBKS back to winning ways while MI lose two in succession.
Toss and Team News
Punjab Kings won the toss and surprisingly opted to bowl first. KL Rahul introduced a like-to-like change in the playing eleven. Ravi Bishnoi, who had a stellar debut campaign in the UAE, was handed his first appearance in the season. He replaced Murugan Ashwin.
Mumbai Indians remained unchanged from the eleven that lost against Delhi Capitals.
MI struggle their way to a below-par total
On a surface where each run has to be earned, 140-150 was deemed as a good score. And with a bowling attack like MI, the score was deemed ideal to defend, much like they did in the fixtures against KKR and SRH.
However, the batting unit struggled massively over the course of 20 overs. Moises Henriques (0-12) was asked to open the bowling while Deepak Hooda (1-15) bowled from the other end for left-handed Quinton de Kock (3).
The wicket-keeper batsman hit one straight to mid-off in the circle to give PBKS an early breakthrough. MI kept struggling and registered their second-ever lowest powerplay score in franchise history. The team were only able to muster 21 runs in the powerplay.
Instead of Suryakumar Yadav, it was Ishan Kishan (6), who was slotted in at No.3. The left-hander struggled since the first ball and finally succumbed in the over after the powerplay.
The well-set Rohit Sharma (63) and the ever-fluent Suryakumar Yadav (33) were able to restore parity in the chase with a vital 79-run partnership for the third wicket. The MI skipper registered a well-compiled half-century and also the highest score by a MI batsman in the edition so far.
MI’s death-over woes continued as wickets started tumbling. The departures of the well-set duo put pressure on the out-of-form middle order. Kieron Pollard (16), Krunal Pandya (3), and Hardik Pandya (1) struggled to connect and time. Solid death bowling by Mohammad Shami(2-21) and Arshdeep Singh (1-28) restricted the defending champions to just 131-6 in their 20 overs.
PBKS scaled the target with Gayle and Rahul being the pillars
Punjab Kings had a smooth start to the run chase and cruised towards the powerplay mark without the loss of a wicket.
The in-form Rahul Chahar (1-19) struck as Mayank Agarwal (25) perished while clearing one over long-on.
The run-rate took a massive dip in the middle overs, but the duo of KL Rahul (60) and Chris Gayle (43) were careful not to lose their wickets.
The Universe Boss had to hold back his natural instinct and play according to the pitch. While the spinners kept things tight, the pacers leaked runs at the other end. Trent Boult (0-30) had a forgettable outing as KL Rahul scored a battling half-century.
PBKS eventually reached the target with more than 2 overs to spare to end their three-match losing streak.
Mumbai Indians 131-6 (20 overs) (R.Sharma 63; R.Bishnoi 2-21)
Punjab Kings 132-1 (17.4 overs) (KL Rahul 60*; R.Chahar 1-19)
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