Tendulkar's 50,000th run puts Mumbai in final

India

Batsman Sachin Tendulkar scored the 50,000th run of his prolific career, as the Mumbai Indians beat Trinidad and Tobago by six wickets at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi – and secured a berth in Sunday's Champions League Twenty20 final against the Rajasthan Royals at the same venue.

Batsman Sachin Tendulkar scored the 50,000th run of his prolific career, as the Mumbai Indians beat Trinidad and Tobago by six wickets at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi – and secured a berth in Sunday's Champions League Twenty20 final against the Rajasthan Royals at the same venue.

Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma's decision to bowl first after winning the toss enjoyed early reward, with opposition opener Lendl Simmons out for a duck. While opener Evin Lewis's brisk 62 and the hard-hitting Yannick Ottley's quickfire 41 led the recovery, 153 for five was ultimately a modest total.

Returning to the playing XI, fast bowler Mitchell Johnson cherished the key wicket of skipper Denesh Ramdin. Spinners Harbhajan Singh and Pragyan Ojha and seamers Kieron Pollard and Nathan Coulter-Nile, too, took a wicket each amid a fine performance with the ball from the Indian outfit.

Mumbai's response with the bat was, indeed, authoritative. Tendulkar and West Indian recruit Dwayne Smith set the foundation with an opening alliance of 90 runs inside 11 overs, after which cavalier cameos from Sharma and wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik capped victory with five deliveries to spare.

Three telling breakthroughs – Smith, Sharma included – from Trinidad and Tobago spinner Sunil Narine, who recently signed for South Africa's Cape Cobra's franchise, went in vain.

The veteran Tendulkar, during a final score of 35, became the 16th cricketer – and only Indian – to reach 50,000 runs across first-class, List A and Twenty20 cricket combined. Smith, for his 59 in 38 balls, was named Man of the Match.

"I wasn't aware that I was close to 50,000 runs, I only saw it on the big screen," said Tendulkar, after the match. "But it was a good performance by us after Smith gave us a good start. It's fun to watch him hit those balls hard. I told him I am not backing up too far as I might get hit by his shots."

The Royals, who beat the Chennai Super Kings by 14 runs, will be without batsman Brad Hodge for the tournament finale. Hodge has been sidelined by a knee injury sustained on Friday.

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