All-round Pollard sinks Rajasthan

News

A shrewd all-round performance from Kieron Pollard carried the Mumbai Indians to a comfortable 27-run victory over the Rajasthan Royals in Wednesday's Indian Premier League clash at the Wankhede Stadium.

A shrewd all-round performance from Kieron Pollard carried the Mumbai Indians to a comfortable 27-run victory over the Rajasthan Royals in Wednesday's Indian Premier League clash.

A 197 for six – the highest of the 2012 tournament – built on the back of Pollard's savage half-ton was always going to prove an insurmountable task after Rajasthan lost two wickets across consecutive deliveries at the start of their pursuit.

Munaf Patel, who moved to the top of the wicket-taking charts with another fine four-for, paved the way for Pollard to seal the deal. The West Indian all-rounder, with his steady seam, snared three wickets in four balls amid some mastefully disguised slower deliveries to dash Rajasthan's hopes after Owais Shah had kept them in the hunt.

The journeyman Englishman weighed in with 76 from 42 balls, but very little support around him meant the globetrotting right-hander's effort was ultimately futile.

Earlier Pollard put in a characteristically savage knock to power a Mumbai outfit still without the services of the injured Sachin Tendulkar to hefty proportions.

The swashbuckling recruit was at his destructive best en route to 64 from 33 balls, four sixes and six fours included. Ambati Rayudu, meanwhile, struck a complementary 47 from 32 during a 96-run alliance inside nine overs alongside Pollard.

The Rajasthan attack were carted to all corners of the Wankhede Stadium, with Johan Botha's figures taking a brutal beating. The South African off-spinner endured a brief stay in the attack, fetching all of 22 runs from his sole over as Man of the Match Pollard wielded his willow in merciless fashion.

The result saw Mumbai, previously third, rise to the top of the nine-team standings after three wins from four attempts, while the previously unbeaten Royals slipped from first to fourth.

Thursday's fixtures bring an intriguing showdown between reigning champions Chennai and last year's losing finalists Bangalore and the winless Kings XI Punjab meet the unbeaten Pune Warriors.

Latest