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IPL 2020: Good to have Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya back in form, says Rohit Sharma

Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya smashed 44 runs in the last two overs and put up 67 runs in just 23 balls for the fifth wicket.

SNS | New Delhi |

Captain Rohit Sharma heaped praises for all-rounders Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya after their blitzkrieg knocks down the order helped Mumbai Indians in beating Kings XI Punjab by 48 runs on Thursday.

Alongside Pandya and Pollard’s performance, Mumbai Indians rode on a complete team performance to beat Kings XI Punjab at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

“We didn’t start really well, but we always knew with the kind of attack Punjab had we wanted to capitalise. Those two guys they back themselves to get the runs, it’s nice to have them in form as well,” said MI captain Rohit Sharma in the post-match presentation ceremony as quoted by IANS.

Despite a sloppy start, Rohit Sharma’s 45-ball 70 and fiery knocks from Kieron Pollard (47 off 20 balls) and Hardik Pandya (30 off 11) down the order helped Mumbai Indians in posting 191/4 at the end of the 20 overs.

Chasing, Kings XI Punjab never looked on course as the Mumbai bowlers kept hindering their efforts with regular wickets. Jasprit Bumrah with his 2/18 was the main architect of Mumbai’s defence. He got able support from all the other bowlers, including Rahul Chahar, James Pattinson and Trent Boult.

“It wasn’t going to be easy with the ball against KXIP’s batting line-up. We knew we had to get early wickets and everything went to plan, credit to the bowlers,” Rohit said.

“They have now got an idea of what I need from them and I have got to know them better too,” the Mumbai skipper added.

Pollard, who was declared player of the match, said it was good to see Pandya among the runs. Pandya is coming back to the sport after an absence of nearly a year due to a back injury.

“It’s about what’s there in front of you. Look at the bowlers and see how many you want to get, 15 off the over and then you try to go hard. Today, Hardik had to come and swing and he showed his prowess. We know sky is the limit in the last 4 overs,” he said.

With this win, which was their second of this season’s IPL, the defending champions now stand at the top of the points table with four points from three matches.

Four other teams also have the same number of points but are behind Mumbai due to net run rate (NRR). Punjab have won a solitary match and have two points.