Pollard lifts Mumbai to victory
Mumbai - West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard hammered a 33-ball 64 and then bagged 4-44 as Mumbai Indians scored a 27-run victory over Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League on Wednesday.
Pollard's mid-innings blitz, during which he smashed four sixes and six fours, helped Mumbai pile up a huge total of 197-6 after being put in to bat at the Wankhede Stadium.
But the home team got a scare as Owais Shah smashed a 42-ball 76 with five sixes and five fours, before a two-wicket burst by Sri Lanka paceman Lasith Malinga wrested the initiative back and Rajasthan were bowled out for 170 in 19.4 overs.
Pollard was in devastating form and produced his trademark shots over the mid-wicket and long-on boundaries. He once blasted 23 runs off an over from off-spinner Johan Botha, including two consecutive sixes.
He also took 15 off an over from left-arm spinner Ankeet Chavan before holing out to the deep in the last ball of the same over, the 17th of the innings. Pollard added 96 for the fourth wicket with Ambati Rayudu (47), who struck three sixes and one four off 32 balls.
Apart from Pollard and Rayudu, opener Richard Levi (29 off 22), Rohit Sharma (21 off 13) and Harbhajan Singh (18 off 6) were the others to chip in with useful cameos.
For Rajasthan, opener Ajinkya Rahane (40 off 31) started a spirited fightback that turned into a threat when Shah joined him. The pair added 82 for the third wicket before Pollard had Rahane caught at long-on off a slower delivery.
Shah continued with his lusty blows, whacking a majority of his shots towards the square-leg boundary but was bowled by Malinga in trying to force the pace. Malinga also dismissed Botha soon after as Rajasthan slipped to 136-5 in the 15th over.
Pollard, unable to intimidate Shah earlier on despite an exchange of words, then came on to grab three wickets in the space of four deliveries when he dismissed Ashok Menaria, Chavan and Amit Singh in the 18th over of the innings.
Munaf Patel, who had taken two early wickets including that of Dravid, also finished with a four-wicket haul as Rajasthan failed to play out the 20 overs.
Harbhajan Singh-led Mumbai now have three wins and a loss from four games while Rahul Dravid's Rajasthan Royals have two wins from three outings.
Mumbai Indians 197-6 (Kieron Pollard 64, Ambati Rayudu 47, Richard Levi 29, Amit Singh 2-29, Brad Hogg 2-31) def. Rajasthan Royals 170 all out in 19.4 overs (Owais Shah 76, Ajinkya Rahane 40, Munaf Patel 4-28, Kieron Pollard 4-44, Lasith Malinga 2-13).