Hyderabad: Mumbai Indians recorded their biggest victory over Kings XI Punjab by 48 runs to jump to the top of the points table on Thursday. Rohit Sharma’s team began their innings slowly as they were 102/3 in 15 overs. However, Kieron Pollard (47 not out) and Hardik Pandya (30 not out) showcased their big-hitting prowess smashing 89 runs in the last five overs propelling their side to the massive total and lay the foundation for victory.
MI’s leg-spinner lauded the duo of Pollard and Pandya and said they always believed in their abilities. “We believe in batting abilities. Both of them are big hitters and are in good form. Pollard almost won us the game against RCB from nowhere in the last match. So they have been doing it for the team for years. We didn’t put too many runs on the board in the beginning so we thought if Pollard bats up the order we can put a big total. That is why he batted up the order,” said the leggie who picked up two wickets in his spell.
The 21-year-old spinner also said that fast bowlers picking up wickets up front eased pressure on him and helped him go for wickets. “When you get wickets at the start, the pressure will be less on us in the middle and we can go for wickets instead of looking to save runs. So I went for wickets and it was a bit easy. There was a bit of turn on the wicket as well,” he added.
Meanwhile, Sheldon Cottrell said he was happy with his performance and the way he bowled but disappointed that his show failed to help his team. He went for 30 runs in his previous over against Rajasthan Royals with Rahul Tewatia hitting five sixes off his over. However, he returned with a wicket maiden in the first over and ended with 1/20 in his four overs. “My confidence was always there but I wish my performance could have helped my team cross the line. Unfortunately, it didn’t.”
Cottrell finished his quota much before and that left youngster K Gowtham to bowl the final over, where he conceded too many runs. On the strategy, he said, “I back my captain fully. He felt that the strategy would work, but it didn’t today. We will learn from this.”
When asked about whether they were worried about their death bowling, he said, “I have been working hard on my death bowling. I think we are getting there. We are learning from our mistakes and practising hard. I would not say it is worrying but it is a matter of time,” he concluded.