Friday 27 September 2013 

CLT20: Mumbai Too Good For Lions

Kieron Pollard, Mumbai Indians
Kieron Pollard hit a quickfire 31 to help the Mumbai Indians overcome the Lions
© REUTERS / Action Images
 

Mumbai Indians 141-3 (Smith 63no) beat
Highveld Lions 140-5 by seven wickets
Champions League Twenty20 Group A, Jaipur

Indian Premier League champions Mumbai Indians outclassed South Africa's Lions to take a seven-wicket win in today's Champions League Twenty20 clash.

Lions slipped to 80 for five having been invited to bat first and could only post 140 for five, a total that thanks to a half-century from Dwayne Smith, Mumbai overcame with nine balls to spare.

Smith was unbeaten on 63 in 47 balls and fellow West Indian Kieron Pollard thumped 31 in 20 balls to hand Mumbai their first win of the tournament.

Lions' innings never really got going. Mitchell Johnson struck early to remove Rassie van der Dussen for 13 and then Mumbai's slower bowlers took control.

Harbhajan Singh (1-19), Pragyan Ojha (2-26) and Rishi Dhawan (1-21) all bowled well, preventing Lions from building partnerships until captain Alviro Petersen and Dwaine Pretorius came together at the fall of the fifth wicket.

Petersen hit 35 not out in 27 balls and Pretorius 31 not out in 21 to give their side a small chance with a 60-run partnership.

Their chances only improved when Sachin Tendulkar was bowled by Sohail Tanvir for five and Dinesh Karthik was caught by Petersen off Imran Tahir for 13.

Rohit Sharma made just 20 before he was caught off Pretorius, but Smith was the man who the Lions really needed to get rid off.

He blasted 63 in 47 balls with six fours and three sixes and with Pollard quickly finding his range, the pair hurried Mumbai to victory with a 51-run partnership that took just under six overs.

Although they won with plenty of balls in hand, but for Pollard hitting two sixes in five balls in the 17th and 18th overs, and Smith adding another later in the 18th, the match might just have gone down to the wire.

The Lions will reflect on their inability to build partnerships or set a platform early in their innings as the fact that Mumbai had done so gave Smith and Pollard the freedom to hit out and finish off the job in style.

Group A standings: Rajasthan Royals 8 points, Mumbai Indians, Otago Volts 6 points, Lions, Perth Scorchers 2 points

© Cricket World 2013