Mumbai's playoff hopes alive

2014-05-21 20:44
Lendl Simmons (Sportzpics)
Mohali - Lendl Simmons scored the first century of the 2014-edition of the IPL to power the Mumbai Indians to an emphatic seven-wicket win against the table-topping Kings XI Punjab at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali, Chandigarh on Wednesday.

The supersport.com website reports that Simmons hit an undefeated 100 off 61 balls with fourteen fours and two sixes.

His West Indian colleague Kieron Pollard hammered a glorious six off the final delivery of the penultimate over to power the Mumbai Indians to 159 for three.

Punjab finished with an under-par 156 for eight in their twenty overs after they were sent in to face the music first.

A double-break by the legspinner Shreyas Gopal in the twelfth over, accounting for Manan Vohra and Glenn Maxwell, proved to be a turning point in the match.

Punjab, looking initially as if they were heading for 180, accumulated only 43 runs between the tenth and the eighteenth over while four wickets tumbled.

George Bailey muscled 39 off thirty balls with two fours and two sixes to ensure some late momentum.

Earlier, Vohra hit 36 off 34 balls to set the tone and lay the platform, but Gopal took 2-32 and Jasprit Bumrah finished with 2-31 to deny Punjab significant progress.

Simmons had license to swing and he did just that.

The swashbuckling West Indian opener unsettled the two young fast bowlers, Sandeep Sharma and Beuran Hendricks, during their opening spells as Mumbai reached 50 after 4.4 overs.

Simmons used his feet like a world champion fencer and picked up line and length very quickly.

While he played with typical Caribbean flair and slammed 50 off 27 balls to power MI to 62 without loss after six overs, Michael Hussey accumulated quietly.

Akshar Patel terminated the threatening opening partnership by bowling Hussey for six as the visitors slipped to 68 for one after seven overs.

Simmons, undeterred, proceeded with the power hitting as he steered them to 96 for one after 10 overs. His contribution was 75 off 40 balls, with 13 fours and a six.

A feature of his batting was his beautiful square cuts and excellent straight drives past extra cover.

He was never one-dimensional and played with equal destructive power all around the wicket.

Ambati Rayudu perished in the twelfth over when he tried to send a leg-cutter by Rishi Dhawan and was caught in the covers by Sehwag for 17.

Rohit Sharma departed in the eighteenth over when he played a lazy cut shot off Hendricks and was caught by Sandeep Sharma for 18 with the score on 148 for three.

Patel took 1-27 in four overs, while Hendricks finished with 1-33 in four overs.

But Hendricks was warned early for running onto the wicket and changed his line to operate around the wicket.

Consequently he was not as his best.


Kings XI Punjab: V Sehwag, M Vohra, GJ Maxwell, SE Marsh, WP Saha (wicketkeeper), AR Patel, GJ Bailey (captain), R Dhawan, BE Hendricks, Shivam Sharma, Sandeep Sharma

Mumbai Indians: MEK Hussey, LMP Simmons, KA Pollard, RG Sharma (captain), AT Rayudu, AP Tare (wicketkeeper), JJ Bumrah, K Santokie, P Kumar, PP Ojha, S Gopal

Read more on:    mumbai indians  |  kings xi punjab  |  ipl  |  cricket

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