Jasprit Bumrah’s exceptional death bowling opened up the playoff race as he stole a victory for the Mumbai Indians, who beat the Kings XI Punjab by three runs in Mumbai.
The Indian superstar finished with figures of 3-15 in his four overs to give his side a fighting chance for a playoff spot.
KXIP elected to bowl and Andrew Tye’s performance was key to his side keeping MI at bay, despite a middle-over rescue mission from Kieron Pollard. The Windies big-hitter scored his first half-century to take his side past the 150-run mark.
Pollard was helped by Krunal Pandya, who added a 23-ball 32 in a 65-run stand, dragging MI from 71-4 to 136-5 before Pandya’s dismissal.
Tye gave KXIP the perfect start by taking three wickets upfront, dismissing Evin Lewis (nine) in the fourth over and taking a double in the sixth. He also removed Suryakumar Yadav (27 off 15 balls) and Ishan Kishan (20 off 12 balls). He also dismissed danger man Hardik Pandya on nine in the second last over to end with 4-16.
The Mumbai Indians ended on 186-8 in 20 overs.
Chris Gayle was dismissed early on after an 11-ball 18 as the Wankhede Stadium erupted in delight. But all the danger had not passed when Lokesh Rahul and Aaron Finch – desperate to prove himself – met each other at the crease.
The pair were marvellous at silencing the home fans. Finch (46 off 35 balls) supported Rahul perfectly as they scored 111 for the second wicket to take the side to the 145-run mark.
But Bumrah turned the momentum back in his side’s favour. His third over saw him remove Finch and Marcus Stoinis in the 17th over to rattle KXIP one run short of the 150-run mark.
It was up to Rahul to finish what he started. Three reverse scoops from the 26-year-old at the end of the 18th over got the visitors to 23 off 12 balls. Bumrah brought his side back into the contest again in the 19th over. He conceded just six runs and took the crucial wicket of Rahul, who was removed after a brilliant 60-ball 94.
Bumrah’s magnificent spell of bowling saw his side needing to defend 17 off the last over. A wicket, two singles, a six and a four in the final over saw the Mumbai Indians claim a three-run win.
This means three teams – Kings XI Punjab, Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians – are on 12 points and are all fighting for a playoff spot.