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IPL Match 32: Mumbai Indians down Rajasthan Royals despite heroic Samson

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Young Sanju Samson continued to impress in the Indian Premier League, but the young wicketkeeper batsman's fine innings of 76 from 46 balls went in vain as the Mumbai Indians squeezed out an 8 runs victory over the Rajasthan Royals at the Wankede Stadium on Friday night.

The Royals won the toss and made the poor decision to field. The move backfired and then some as each member of Mumbai's top six got into double figures with everyone with the exception of Unmukt Chand scoring at a strike rate in excess of 120. The stellar innings came right at the fag end of the innings as the recalled Ambati Rayudu made a classy unbeaten 53 from 27 balls. Parthiv Patel provided the early push, making 23 from 14 balls, while Kieron Pollard coming in lower down the order went one better, making 24. Lendl Simmons anchored the innings at the top of the order, making 38 as Mumbai piled on an impressive 187-5 in their 20 overs.

The Royals made a decent start in response as they raced to 30 from the first 3 overs before a charging Ajinkya Rahane threw his wicket away for 16. Shane Watson then shared a stand worth 41 with Samson, contributing 28 to his team's cause.

While Samson was going strong, the Royals looked very much on top in the run chase, with Steve Smith (27) keeping the rookie good company. Smith thought struggled to find the fence today, and his dismissal put pressure on the lower middle order, who collapsed under the pressure.

Highly rated youngster Karun Nair (7) and Deepak Hooda (1) failed to fire with Mitchell McClenaghan landing some crucial blows late in the innings to slow down the Royals' charge, and the task proved to be too much for Stuart Binny and Tim Southee towards the end as the Royals fell agonizingly short.

The result means that the Royals stay second, still level on points with the Chennai Super Kings, but having played two games more. They are however still 3 points clear of the third placed Kolkata Knight Riders, who too have played a couple of games less. The Mumbai Indians meanwhile are still second from bottom, but are now just 2 points shy of the all important fourth place.

Mini Scorecard:

Mumbai Indians 187/5 (20 overs, 9.35rpo)

A Rayudu 53* (27) D Kulkarni 2-26 (3)

L Simmons 38 (31) A Sharma 1-299 (4)

Rajasthan Royals 179/7 (20 overs, 8.95rpo)

S Samson 76 (46) M McClenaghan 3-31 (4)

S Watson 28 (23) L Malinga 1-34 (4)

Mumbai Indians win by 8 runs