CSK turn blue as Rohit sets up Mumbai win.
CHENNAI: Mumbai Indians have done it again. Rohit Sharma’s team on Friday accomplished what other sides couldn’t — beating Chennai Super Kings at their fortress. It was Mumbai who halted Super Kings’ marauding run (10-match streak) at Chepauk in 2015 and they returned to end the defending champions’ seven-match winning spree — five-in-a-row this season — with a 46-run drubbing.
The convincing victory pushed Mumbai to No.2 spot with 14 points in 11 games.
Super Kings cut a sorry figure without their talismanic leader M.S. Dhoni, who missed the match against due to a bout of fever. A few forced changes didn’t help the team’s cause either.
Chasing 156, Super Kings lost wickets at regular intervals and slumped to 60 for five in 10 overs. After pacers Lasith Malinga (4/37) and Hardik Pandya (1/22) rattled CSK’s top-order, left-arm spinner Krunal Pandya (2/7) broke the home team’s weak middle-order.
Mumbai stuttered to 155 for 4 after being in a commanding position (84 for one) at the half-way mark. Rohit Sharma stroked a 48-ball 67 and shared a 75-run partnership with Evin Lewis for the second wicket, but the powerful Mumbai middle-order failed to cash in on the good start.
In-form Quinton de Kock dug his own grave after hitting Deepak Chahar for a four and a six. The big-hitting Evin Lewis looked a pale shadow of himself in his run-a-ball 32. With Rohit looking fluent at the other end, Lewis’ uncharacteristic knock didn’t hurt Mumbai much.
En route to his 35th IPL fifty, Rohit dispatched Harbhajan Singh over midwicket and long-on and carved a beautiful ramp shot against Dwayne Bravo.
It was left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner who broke the shackles with a brilliant spell (4-0-13-2). Santner fired in as many as 15 dot balls. He kept Hardik Pandya (23 off 18) at bay and and took the wicket of Rohit. If not for the 17-run last over off Bravo, Mumbai wouldn’t have crossed 150-mark.