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Tuesday, Jul 14th

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The Mumbai Indians crushed the Pune Warriors by 5 wickets in a low intensity encounter at the Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium in Pune in the early kick-off on Saturday. A poor effort from the Pune Warriors with the bat saw them post a well below par total of 112-8 which Mumbai chased down comfortably enough in the end to reclaim second place in the IPL standings.

In what was the second Maharashtrian Derby of the season, Pune captain Aaron Finch and Rohit Sharma of the Mumbai Indians strode out for the toss. The flip of the coin went the way of the Warriors, who chose to bat first on a typical slowish track. The million-dollar player of this edition, Glenn Maxwell finally made his debut for the Mumbai Indians as Kieron Pollard, who was unwell had to miss out the game. Pune Warriors made five changes, bringing in Abhishek Nayar, Manish Pandey, Kane Richardson, Ashok Dinda and Ajantha Mendis in place of Udit Birla, K Upadhyay, M Rawat, W Parnell and Mitchell Marsh.

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The Mumbai Indians reclaimed second spot in the Indian Premier League standings by routing the Kolkata Knight Riders by 65 runs at the Wankhede Stadium. Powered by an outstanding 48 from just 28 balls by the long overdue Sachin Tendulkar and an equally attacking 34 from Dinesh Karthik, Mumbai posted an imposing 170-6 in their 20 overs. KKR were never really in the hunt, bowled out for an appalling 105 with only four batsmen getting into double figures. Harbhajan Singh led an excellent bowling unit with figures of 3-27, but the wickets were shared around excellently with Mitchell Johnson doing just as well to take 2-13 from his 4 overs.


It had been just two days since the Mumbai Indians had registered an emphatic victory against two-time champions, the unstoppable Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. At the same venue and with the same momentum, the team was all set to take on defending champions, Kolkata Knight Riders, who were in a must-win situation and had a slim chances of making it to the play-offs.

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The Sunrisers Hyderabad stretched their unbeaten run at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Uppal to four games by thrashing the Mumbai Indians by 7 wickets in a surprisingly one sided contest. The Sunrisers bowlers produced a stellar effort to restrict a usually free scoring Mumbai side to 129-4 in their 20 overs with Ishant Sharma and Ashish Mishra getting 2 wickets a piece. The hosts then chased down the runs with 2 full overs to spare thanks to an excellent unbeaten 73 from Shikhar Dhawan to join the leaderboard logjam at second place on 12 points.

Batting first on winning the toss, the Mumbai Indians got off to a decent start, posting 31 runs in the first 4 overs before Ishant landed a double blow, bowling Sachin Tendulkar for 14 and getting a distracted Dinesh Karthik caught at point for naught two balls later. Despite those setbacks, Mumbai reached 41-2 at the end of the powerplay, and with their batting line-up there was sufficient cause for optimism.

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Over the course of IPL 2013, there have been several versions of Mumbai Indians, who have turned up on the field. Rohit Sharma's Mumbai Indians, lacking the clinical approach they displayed in the previous game, let Kings XI off the hook after a resplendent batting performance . Rohit led from the front with a remarkable innings at a break-neck speed as Mumbai piled up a massive 174-3. The spirited Punjab side made a fist of the challenge keeping the chase alive till the very last ball before eventually falling short by 4 runs. Mumbai's razor-sharp fielding, in sharp contrast to Punjab's sloppiness proved the difference in a tight affair.

The last time Adam Gilchrist strode out for the toss against Kolkata, he said he was tantalizingly close to stepping aside because of his repeated failures. Believe it or not, Gilly has only tallied 94 in as many as 8 games. Tonight he sat out to pave way for Shaun Marsh with David Hussey leading the side in his conspicuous absence.

Marsh did not create any impact though, falling to Pragyan Ojha with Pollard plucking out a one-handed catch, his second of the night. At 60-3, KXIP was looking up to David Hussey to revive the chase. Hussey (still smarting from the game-changing final over) briefly threatened before he holed out in the deep. The spin twins- Bhajji (3-14) and Ojha (2-22) combined well to hike the required rate.

Refusing to yield, David Miller(56) and Praveen Kumar(24) landed some meaty blows but it ended in vain.

Kumar's penultimate ball six left Punjab needing 5 off the last delivery. Buckling under pressure, PK sliced a juicy full toss right down the throat of Sachin at point. The story would have been even closer had umpire Kulkarni not got away unscathed with a waist high no-ball the same crucial over.

There is nothing like a packed stadium in India, cheering one of its heroes horse and it peaks when the player is Sachin Tendulkar and the venue is Mumbai. Sachin gave the crowd good reason to clear their collective throats, hitting a couple of vintage drives past cover earlier in the day. Unfortunately, the master blaster flattered only to deceive, inside-edging a Praveen Kumar delivery back onto the stumps. Dinesh Karthik's knock was then cut short by Manpreet Gony's extra pace and bounce.

Settling on a probing line and length, Kings XI's four pronged pace attack, spear-headed by the wily Praveen Kumar, pushed Dwayne Smith into a tight corner. In a crucial mid passage of play though, Punjab's fielding froze, frittering away the early advantage- Vohra spilled Smith, Chawla let off a four at deep cover, Gurkeerat Singh missed a stumping to gift Kieron Pollard a life. Benefiting from the dropped catch, Dwayne Smith(33) proceeded to raise his strike rate to 103.

Indeed,the presents were overflowing for Mumbai. Pollard received another lucky respite when he was bowled off a Gony no-ball in the ante-penultimate over. Gony, in particular, was picked out for special treatment by Rohit Sharma.

Blending finesse with power, Mumbai's new captain ran amok in the death overs as the Wankhede stadium went baila again. The Trinidadian , meanwhile,was happy to play the pick-up truck for 'Rolls Royce Rohit'.

Rohit Sharma's 39-ball unbeaten 79, including 26 off a debatable last over from David Hussey propelled Mumbai to an imposing total that seemed a pipe-dream at the dawn of the innings. His innings was a montage of magnificent shots ranging from the front foot, elbow cover drive to the precise pull to the lethal loft.

The hi-flying Mumbai Indians will be in action against Hyderabad on Wednesday whist Kings XI will confront their neighbors, the mighty Chennai Super Kings at Chepauk the next day.


MI: D Smith, S Tendulkar, D Karthik(wk), R Sharma, A Rayudu, K Pollard, H Singh, D Kulkarni, M Johnson, L Malinga, P Ojha

KXIP: S Marsh, M Singh, M Vohra, D Hussey(c), D Miller, G Singh(wk), A Mahmood,  P Chawla,  M Gony, P Kumar, P Awana

Mini Scorecard:

MI 174-3 (20 overs, 8.7 rpo)

R Sharma 79*(39) P Kumar 1-24

D Smith 33(32) P Chwala 1-24

KXIP: 170 all out (20 overs, 8.5 rpo)

D Miller 56(34) H Singh 3-14

D Hussey 34(18) P Ojha 2-22

Mumbai win by 4 runs



The table topping Royal Challengers Bangalore were routed by 58 runs by the Mumbai Indians in a one sided contest at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday night. Batting first on a flat track, the Indians amassed an imposing 194-7 in their 20 overs, with Dwayne Smith top scoring with 50, and most of the big guns contributing some quick runs. For Bangalore, their big guns failed to fire as Dhawal Kulkarni ran through the top order, while Harbhajan Singh netted the big fish, Chris Gayle, to steer their side to an easy win.

Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma, standing in once again for Ricky Ponting, won the toss and elected to bat first. Mumbai made one change from their last game against the Kolkata Knight Riders, bringing in pace bowler Dhawal Kulkarni in place of spinner Yuzvendra Chahal. Skipper Rohit Sharma hoped to put up a good total on board and make good use of the conditions at the Wankhede.

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The Mumbai Indians celebrated Sachin Tendulkar's 40th Birthday in ideal fashion, notching up their 4th win of the IPL in front of a packed house at the Eden Gardens, who unsurprisingly had loads of love to hand out to the visitors. The game itself was a nail-biter that went down to the wire, with Ambati Rayudu and the irrepressible Harbhajan Singh seeing their side to victory with a ball to spare.

The expected change in the Mumbai team was evident right at the toss as Rohit Sharma walked out to captain the Mumbai Indians in place of Ricky Ponting, who sat out of this game in favour of Mitchell Johnson. Kolkata won the toss and elected to make first use of what is traditionally a slow, low pitch at the Gardens. There were changes for both sides with Mumbai bringing in two more spinners for the Kolkata experience - Pragyan Ojha and Yuzvendra Chahal. KKR meanwhile made just the one change, also bringing in an additional spinner Iqbal Abdulla for Laxmi Ratan Shukla.

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The Delhi Daredevils, registered their first win of the 2013 IPL season as they decimated a Mumbai Indians side that slipped to 3-3 for the season. Batting first, Mumbai posted a very competitive 161-4 from their 20 overs on the back of outstanding half centuries from Rohit Sharma (73 from 43 balls) and Sachin Tendulkar (54 from 47 balls). However, Delhi with a changed opening combination of Virender Sehwag (95* from 57 balls) and Mahela Jaywardene (59 from 43 balls) made mincemeat of the target, cruising to a win with 3 full overs to spare.

Ricky Ponting won the toss and made the easy decision to bat first on a Kotla track that was bound to get slower and lower as the game progressed. Both teams made three changes to their sides with Mumbai bringing in Dwayne Smith, Munaf Patel and Jasprit Bumrah with Mitchell Johnson, Pragyan Ojha and Rishi Dhawan the men to make way. Delhi meanwhile finally gave a game to the South African tweaker Roelof van der Merwe with the injured Jeevan Mendis sitting out, while Andre Russell replaced Morne Morkel. Venugopal Rao also returned from injury to take the place of the struggling for runs Manpreet Juneja.

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