Sports

KXIP pip Mumbai Indians by 7 runs to stay alive

KXIP pip Mumbai Indians by 7 runs to stay aliveā€

Earlier, opener Wriddhiman Saha delivered a splendid 55-ball unbeaten 93 to propel Kings XI up to 230 for three after they were sent in.

Guptill started the innings slamming medium pacer Hardik Pandya for two fours in the very first over and then dispatching Sri Lankan Lasith Malinga for a flat six as the Kiwi right-hander looked set for a big innings. We came back well in the middle overs and picked up wickets and then Pollard and Hardik Pandya batted well.

Batting first, Martin Guptill and WriddhimanSahahelped KXIP to their season-best powerplay score; the opening pair added 71 runs in the first six overs with both batsmen contributing in nearly equal proportions. Nightmares of Mumbai's dominant chase the last two times these sides met must have been resurfacing for the KXIP players, particularly when their fielding skills began to desert them again - even the ever reliable Maxwell dropped a catch and fumbled another ball into the boundary.

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The 453-run aggregate total was the second-highest in IPL history, exceeded only by the 469 between Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals in 2010. Smashing his two other sixes off leggie Karn Sharma in a cameo which reminded one of the way he batted when he was at his best during the 2014 IPL, Maxwell added 63 in 33 balls with Saha before he was castled while trying to make room and cut Bumrah. Before this, Gujarat Lions had posted 214/3 against Delhi Daredevils in this edition.

Simmons, who scored his half-century off only 27 balls, hit five boundaries and four sixes, before a brilliant effort at the long-on boundary from Martin Guptill saw the Caribbean worldwide head back to the dug-out. Pandya perished after sharing a 55-run stand (21 balls) with Pollard for the fifth wicket.

Mohit Sharma, despite being smashed for 33 in his first two overs, bowled a delivery that climbed on a surging Parthiv, who offered simple skier to Manan Vohra. The West Indian remained unbeaten on 50 off 24 balls with the help of a four and five sixes. "But after being hit for a six he followed the team plan and executed it well", explained Saha of what transpired in the final moments of the match.

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In the ninth over, off spinner Harbhajan was hit for three sixes by Maxwell as Punjab batsman continued to dominate the Mumbai bowlers.

MI needed 23 runs from the final two overs, but the KXIP bowlers bowled two excellent overs at the death; Sandeep Sharma conceded only 7 runs in the nineteenth over, and Mohit Sharma conceded only eight runs in the final over. Mumbai put on an impressive batting display, but fell seven-runs short of the target.

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