The VIVO IPL 2016 has reached it’s most crucial stage, the very time of the tournament wherein teams bid to play to their truest potential in order to qualify for the play-offs. Currently, apart from Kings XI and Pune – the rest 6 are all alive for the playoffs but even mathematically, Kings XI Punjab and Pune aren’t eliminated however they rely on other’s team losses to qualify.

This match was pivotal for Mumbai Indians in order to make their birth in play-offs easier. Mumbai won the toss and dropped Parthiv Patel for Unmukt Chand – which meant that Jos Buttler was playing as a wicket-keeper batsman. Kings XI Punjab brought back Glenn Maxwell and Gurkeerat for Anukreet.

 Mumbai Indians vs  Kings XI Punjab
Date 13 May 2016
Venue ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium
124/9 (20)    127/3 (17)
Kings XI won by 7 wickets

Vishakhapatnam being the hosting ground – the pattern thus far in all the matches played here has been to show some application because 140-150 has been visibly a winning total. This match however made it clear that Mumbai Indians got the strategy completely wrong and not only did Mumbai’s batsmen play wrong shots at the wrong times, they also lacked the sensibility of taking singles and keeping the scoreboard ticking, at least to set a stage for hard-hitting Pollard and Buttler.

When 2 of your top 3 batsmen get out for a duck, the start can only be labelled as “disastrous”. Rohit Sharma too had a poor day out and was dismissed for 15 in 24 balls. 36 in 9 overs was the Mumbai Indians score, highlighting the struggle with which the Mumbai Indians batsmen played the powerplay overs – fighting back wasn’t going to be easy as Axar Patel was spinning the ball big way, well supported by Cariappa.

Pollard made a 27 ball 20 which slightly pushed the run rate but not beyond 7 to the over, the final score for Mumbai Indians was 124 for 9 in 20 overs.

Kings XI Punjab has had a very inconsistent IPL 2016, the ups and downs at the top order followed by miserable middle-order in out of form Maxwell and Miller has given their team management severe headaches.

Today though was a totally different tale. After losing Amla early in the chase, the partnership to perfection between Vijay and Saha guided Kings XI to the finishing line (with Saha getting out with just 8 runs required in 22 balls).

Saha made 56 in 40 balls, possibly the most comfortable knock that he’s played all this season and if you recall the 2014 final that Kings XI played vs KKR, Saha’s 90 got them extremely close to the title; highlighting that his form plays a crucial role in Punjab’s bid for victorious performances.

Vijay played an unbeaten knock of 54 in 52 – truly a captain’s knock by him, after being made the captain and be given the extra responsibility, he has truly shun in the extreme pressure circumstances which gives a great idea about his strong character and apt leading skills.

Kings XI’s hopes of making the playoffs are distant but still alive, Mumbai Indians still have a few matches to go but they can’t afford to lose any more; the battle to make it to the playoffs gets even more exciting.

Squads for 13 May 2016 Match 43

Mumbai Indians

Rohit Sharma (C), Corey Anderson, Jasprit Bumrah, Jos Buttler (W), Unmukt Chand, Marchant de Lange, Shreyas Gopal, Harbhajan Singh, Kishore Kamath, Siddhesh Lad, Mitchell McClenaghan, Lasith Malinga, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Parthiv Patel, Kieron Pollard, Deepak Punia, Nitish Rana, Jitesh Sharma, Ambati Rayudu, Nathu Singh, Lendl Simmons, Tim Southee, Jagadeesha Suchith, Vinay Kumar, Akshay Wakhare, Martin Guptill, Jerome Taylor

Kings XI Punjab

Murali Vijay (C), David Miller, Kyle Abbott, Anureet Singh, Armaan Jaffer, Farhaan Behardien, KC Cariappa, Rishi Dhawan, Gurkeerat Mann Singh, Mitchell Johnson, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Nikhil Naik, Axar Patel, Wriddhiman Saha (W), Pradeep Sahu, Sandeep Sharma, Mohit Sharma, Marcus Stoinis, Swapnil Singh, Shardul Thakur, Manan Vohra, Hashim Amla

MI vs KXIP Recap

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