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Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul exchange jerseys

17 May 2018

Mumbai: The Indian Premier League (IPL) is very often considered to be a platform where young, future cricketers showcase their talent for various franchises.

Mumbai: Having a clear plan for in-form batsmen like KL Rahul and just focusing on executing it did the trick for Mumbai Indians (MI) seamer Jasprit Bumrah after he helped his side beat Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in an IPL-XI encounter here, Wednesday.

That was the situation after the Mumbai Indians-Kings XI Punjab match at the Wankhede Stadium here on Wednesday. He did not pick up a wicket but conceded only three runs, putting pressure on Mumbai. The Sri Lankan pace bowler was part of the Mumbai Indians for 10 editions, a mentor in the 11th, and he is also the leading wicket-taker of IPL history. Despite this, Kings XI Punjab heartbreakingly lost the match by 3 runs.

Punjab needed 17 runs in the last over and McCleneghan bowled the last over, which was a thriller and Mumbai clinched the victory from Punjab by three runs.

McClenaghan removed Yuvraj Singh with the third ball and then held firm, finishing with 2-37 off his four overs.

Kiwi bowler Mitchell McClenaghan chipped in late with a quickfire 11 runs after smacking a four and six in the final over.

Again, at no point did Mumbai change tactics. If it had defeated MI, it would have gathered 14 points and made a playoff spot reasonably certain for itself. However, they won five out of their last seven matches and are now placed at the fourth position on the points table.

It meets Chennai Super Kings in Pune on Sunday. The two cricketers were Hardik Pandya from Mumbai Indians and KL Rahul of Punjab. But with Rahul hammering the bowlers all over the park, the match was hanging in balance until Bumrah accounted for him in his next over to tip the balance in MI's favor. "I was just focusing on that and it was a good day, so it went well", Bumrah said at the post-match press conference. "Coming out there and bowling at set batsmen who are trying to finish the job - he's doing it perfectly for us". Rahul, hit three consecutive fours off Ben Cutting in the 18th over, to bring down the equation to 23 runs from 12 balls but he too was dismissed in the 19th over by Bumrah. It was the off cutter from Bumrah which Rahul tried to loft over long off for a maximum but since it came slower off the pitch, Rahul only got the toe end of his bat on the ball and holed out at long off. That's when Krunal Pandya (32) and Kieron Pollard (50) steadied the innings with a 65-run partnership. The Pollard-Krunal partnership was broken when Pandya mistimed a pull off Marcus Stoinis and was caught at short fine-leg by Ankit Rajpoot. Aaron Finch scored 46 runs but once the top three got out, they failed to reach the target and fell short by 3 runs in the last ball of the final over.

Rahul had a chance to grab the Orange Cap for most runs from on Monday when KXIP played Royal Challengers Bangalore, but could only add 21 to his tally.

Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul exchange jerseys