IPL 2017: Rising Pune Supergiant rise over Mumbai Indians – Half-centuries by captain Smith, Rahane ensure RPS successfully chase 185-run target; Leggie Tahir shines with ball
Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma is bowled by Rising Pune Supergiant leg-spinner Imran Tahir for 3 in Pune on Thursday (AFP)
Steve Smith ensured his first outing as Rising Pune Supergiant captain was memorable, playing the perfect anchor role to guide his team to a seven-wicket win over Mumbai Indians at the MCA Stadium in Pune on Thursday.
Chasing a stiff 185-run target, Smith won the game for RPS in the final over, hitting two sixes of the fourth and fifth ball to knock off 13 runs required off six balls. The skipper ended the innings on an unbeaten 84 off just 54 balls.
MI, on the other hand, were made to rue the consistent wickets they lost in the middle overs while batting that eventually was their undoing. The foundation of the chase was laid by opener Ajinkya Rahane, who struck a breezy 60 off just 34 balls after MI got his partner Mayank Agarwal for six. Rahane and Smith were then involved in a 58-run stand that was instrumental in the final outcome.
Tim Southee removed Rahane in the 11th over, but neither him or the rest of the MI bowlers were able to dismiss Smith, who ensured the chase never got out of RPS’s hands until it got tight in the final over.
Earlier, leg-spinner Imran Tahir produced a sensational three-wicket burst in the space of 10 balls to have MI on their knees, but Hardik Pandya’s late heroics took the visitors to 184/8.
South African Tahir (3/28), who was unsold in the IPL auction, triggered a top-order collapse to put brakes on MI’s rollicking start after they were put into bat.
MI did not have any substantial partnership after the opening stand of 45 between Parthiv Patel (19) and Jos Butler (38) before Pandya’s late flourish took them to a good total.
Pandya hit four sixes and a four off the last over of the innings bowled by Ashoke Dinda that gave a boost to the MI total. Pandya remained not out on 35 from 15 balls.