MI star disappointed with Rohit Sharma!

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BCCI

Kieron Pollard has always been a match-winner for Mumbai Indians, says Rohit Sharma

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SportsCafe Desk

05/17/2018

Rohit Sharma was ecstatic after their much-needed win against Kings XI Punjab which kept their chances to qualify for the play-offs alive. Rohit has also praised Kieron Pollard and Jasprit Bumrah for their match-winning performances against Punjab after the visitors threatened to take the game away.

Mumbai Indians have ensured that they stay alive in the race for a top-four finish in the 2018 Indian Premier League after defeating Kings XI Punjab at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. This was a much-needed win for the defending champions to make sure their game goes on after jumping to the fourth spot on the table.

Mumbai set a challenging target of 187 for the away team and after that they took down Kings XI Punjab with 5 wickets taken and 3 runs in hand. Jasprit Bumrah picked up three wickets which really tilted the game in Mumbai's favour especially because of the crucial wicket of KL Rahul (94 off 60 balls) in the 19 over. Rohit Sharma was all praise for Keiron Pollard and Jasprit Bumrah who delivered a match-winning performance. 

"Holding up nicely. After a win, obviously you feel good. I thought we played a perfect game. Whatever we asked from the boys, they came and delivered in the middle," Rohit Sharma said at the post-match presentation ceremony.

Rahul posed a huge threat for Mumbai with his brilliant batting as he smashed 10 fours and three sixes in his brilliant innings. His dismissal was necessary for the hosts to effectively restrict Punjab’s chase. The match was in a pressing stage with 60 needed of 30 balls, when leggie Mayank Markande conceded 18 runs, with Rahul striking back-to-back sixes. Bumrah, however, came to the rescue by dismissing Aaron Finch on the first ball in his second over, which ended the 111-run partnership between Rahul and Finch, bringing Mumbai back in the game. Bumrah delivered the second blow when he removed Marcus Stonis and the visitors were in search of 38 runs from 18 balls at that point.

Rahul hit three consecutive fours off Ben Cutting in the 18 over to bring the chase down to 23 runs from 12 balls. But, that couldn't last long as Bumrah put an end to the carnage by taking out Rahul in the 19 over.

"Bumrah has come a long way the past two years. He's worked really hard on his bowling. Not easy to come out and bowl the way he does. He's the one who's taken the responsibility. Always Malinga will be missed, but since he's gone, we've known Bumrah is the one to take the charge. He might not be up there in the wickets column, but what he does for us is very very important. Coming out and bowling at difficult times to a batsman who's set, that's what we require from him," Rohit said.

Pollard had set the stage in the first innings by striking a massive fifty which aided Mumbai Indians to recover from the mid-innings slump to 186 for 8 wickets in this fate-deciding game. Pollard was initially dropped from the team after having scored only 83 runs in 8 matches but his 50 runs off 23 balls was a real match saver for Mumbai after they had fallen to 71/4.

"Leaving him out was a tough decision. We thought now was the time to bring him back. Not to take anything away from Duminy who hasn't got opportunities. We thought if he's batting down the order, Pollard will be the better option for us. Come the big game, Pollard stands up for us. He was disappointed at being left out. What he did with the bat today, that's what he does," Rohit said.

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