Bangladesh ace all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan turned up with the ball but not with the bat as Mumbai Indians clinched a tight 10-run win against Kolkata Knight Riders yesterday at Chennai to pick up their first win in this edition of the IPL.
Shakib bowled four economical overs on the trot, conceding 23 runs and picking up the important wicket of Surya Kumar Yadav in his final over to allow his side to wretch back control of the match. Surya was running away with the match along with skipper Rohit Sharma at the other end during a blistering 36-ball 56. A flighted delivery from Shakib, that dipped on the batsman, saw Surya sky it high and the catch was taken at long on.
Rohit Sharma tried to press home the advantage but chopped on a Pat Cummins delivery onto his stumps after a 32-ball 43. The innings never really took off after that and Andre Russell finished with a fifer, conceding 15 runs in his two overs. Three wickets in the final over of the innings as Mumbai managed 152 on the board.
The reigning champions however showed that there were many ways to skin a cat after the KKR opening pair of Nitish Rana (57 off 47 and Shubman Gill (33 off 24) were running away with the game during a 72-run opening stand. It was in the ninth over that leg-spinner Rahul Chahar turned the game on its head. The spinner picked up four wickets including Nitish in his final delivery.
Shakib entered the fray in the 13th over after Eoin Morgan's dismissal with the match still in his side's favour. KKR were 104 for three at that point, needing 49 runs off seven overs.
It was Shakib's opportunity to bloom into this match and play a pivotal role having not had enough deliveries to make an impact with the bat in the previous game against Sunrisers Hyderabad. First off he got Rohit Sharma, who was bowling for the first time in the IPL since 2014. Shakib struggled to get off a cut shot as the under edge went through the wicket-keeper's legs for four. Not intended but result still in his favour. That bit of fortune did not do much in the end, Nitish fell in the last delivery of the 15th over and two deliveries later, Shakib skied one off Krunal Pandya and was holed out at deep square leg after a run-a-ball nine.
A nervousness that had begun to creep in was more pronounced. Mumbai dropped catches but had the death bowling to bank upon. Hard-hitter Andre Russell was dropped twice but with 19 needed off the last two overs, Jaspit Bumrah and Trent Boult came up trumps subduing the KKR batsmen. Russell (9 off 15) and Cummins fell in the last over to excellent Boult deliveries as Mumbai clinched their first win.