IPL 2013: Pollard Hammers Sunrisers, Mumbai Go Top
Mumbai Indians 184-3 (Pollard 66no) beat
Sunrisers Hyderabad 178-3 by seven wickets
Indian Premier League 2013, Mumbai
Report by John Pennington
Kieron Pollard thumped eight sixes in a 20-ball half-century that lifted Mumbai Indians to the top of the Indian Premier League 2013 standings courtesy of a seven-wicket victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Pollard finished unbeaten on 66 in 27 balls and his boundary-filled innings saw Mumbai overhaul a stiff target of 179 with three balls to spare.
This was a match for the batsmen if ever there was one, both sides only losing three wickets and while Mumbai's win puts them in a strong position, Sunrisers, four points behind the three leaders, remain locked in a battle with Royal Challengers Bangalore to make the play-offs.
Due to this result, Mumbai closing on 184 for three in reply to Sunrisers' 178 for three, mathematically at least, Kings XI Punjab and Kolkata Knight Riders remain in contention - but still only just.
Today's game got off to a barnstorming start with Parthiv Patel hitting 26 in 14 balls before Shikhar Dhawan, whose batting has boosted Sunrisers immensely since his return from injury, made another telling contribution.
His 59 in 41 deliveries included six fours and two sixes and with both Hanuma Vihari (41 in 37) and Cameron White (43 not out in 23 balls) also making useful contributions, Sunrisers looked well set at the halfway stage.
Lasith Malinga emerged as Mumbai's best bowler with two for 26 from his four overs while Mitchell Johnson (1-43) was the other wicket-taker.
Mumbai also made a fast start, Dwayne Smith monopolising the early scoring and having the temerity to hit Dale Steyn for consecutive boundaries before he fell to Ishant Sharma for 21 in 17 balls.
Sachin Tendulkar (38) helped Dinesh Karthik put on a half-century stand for the second wicket before he was forced to retire hurt, bringing Karthik, who made 30 in 23 balls and Rohit Sharma (20 not out in 15) together.
Karthik and Ambati Rayudu (2) then fell to Karan Sharma and at 99 for three in the 14th over, Mumbai were in need of a serious rescue act, which was duly applied by Pollard.
As Pollard launched into Thisara Perera, hitting him for three consecutive sixes in the 17th over, the game began to turn and he hit three more sixes - one of them coming from a no ball - as Amit Mishra delivered the 18th.
He and Sharma put on their half-century partnership in just 24 balls and although Steyn kept it tight in the penultimate over to leave Perera seven to defend, Pollard had no intention of hanging around.
The first ball disappeared for six, the second he missed, and the third was again monstered over the ropes, leaving Perera to nurse figures of nought for 55 in just 3.3 overs.
© Cricket World 2013
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