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Indian T20 League 2021 Match 42: MUM vs PUN talking points

Mumbai chose to field first in match 42 of the Indian T20 League 2021 in Abu Dhabi and restricted Punjab to 135 runs in 20 overs. Although with a few hiccups, the five-time champions chased down the target with six balls to spare. For Mumbai, Saurabh Tiwary and Nathan Coulter-Nile came in for Ishan Kishan and Adam Milne, while Punjab brought in Mandeep Singh for Mayank Agarwal, who sat out with a stiff neck. Let us take a look at the talking points from the game.

Chris Gayle fails again

Expectations are always high from Chris Gayle in a T20 game, even though age is not by his side any more. Winner of two orange caps, the West Indian has underperformed this season, having an average of only 21 and a strike rate of 125.32, which is much below the standard he has set for himself. Gayle was dropped for the first few games of the UAE leg, before being picked for the game against Hyderabad, where he hit a slow paced 17-ball 14. The management persisted with the Universe Boss and selected him again for the game against Mumbai, where he scored just one run from four balls before being dismissed by Kieron Pollard. Going by Gayle’s performances, it is unlikely that he will play the next game.

Aiden Markram and Deepak Hooda rebuild Punjab’s innings

While openers KL Rahul and Mandeep Singh scored 21 and 15 each, their respective strike rates were poor. Rahul batted at 95.45, while Singh’s strike rate was 107.14. Gayle was a flop show as well, managing just one run from the four balls he faced. It was then that Aiden Markram and Deepak Hooda rescued the side from a possible embarrassing collapse. The two shared a 61-run partnership, with Markram scoring a 29-ball 42 and Hooda contributing 28 off 26. The partnership was broken in the 15th over, when Markram’s stumps were rattled by Rahul Chahar. Among other batters, Nicholas Pooran went for two, Harpreet Brar for 14 and Nathan Ellis for six as Punjab finished on 135-6.

Kieron Pollard sets a new record

The West Indies and Mumbai all-rounder became the first player in T20 history to score 10,000 runs and take 300 wickets. Bowling in the seventh over of the innings, Pollard sent back Chris Gayle for his 299th wicket and in the same over, he scalped his 300th by removing KL Rahul. This was the only over he bowled in the match, conceding eight runs and picking two wickets. In all, Pollard has played 565 T20 games and has an economy rate of a little over eight runs per over.

Nathan Coulter Nile’s economical bowling

Although he went wicketless, Coulter Nile was the most economical of all the Mumbai bowlers, conceding only 19 runs in his four overs. He was entrusted with the job of bowling the last over and he did it well, giving away only eight runs.

A slow start by Mumbai and the Saurabh Tiwary Cameo

At the end of the powerplay overs, Mumbai had managed only 30 runs for the loss of two wickets. Rohit Sharma, who scored fine knocks in the last two games, departed on eight runs, while Suryakumar Yadav walked back with a duck. Quinton de Kock scored 27, but took 29 balls to do so. Saurabh Tiwary, however, helped increase Mumbai’s scoring rate with a 37-ball 45 before being dismissed by Nathan Ellis in the 15th over.

Ravi Bishnoi misses a hat-trick

The 21-year-old legspinner picked up three wickets for 24 runs in the previous game against Hyderabad, which was his first outing in the UAE leg. Bishnoi carried on from where he left, getting Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav in back to back balls before missing out on a hat-trick. The young bowler, who was the highest wicket-taker for India in last year’s U19 World Cup, finished his four over spell with two wickets and an economy rate of 6.25.

Hardik Pandya and Kieron Pollard finish off in style

After 17 overs, Mumbai were 107 for four and needed 29 more off the last three overs with Hardik Pandya and Kieron Pollard in the middle. Pollard hit a six and a four in the 18th over to bring down the target to 16 off 12. In the penultimate over bowled by Mohammad Shami, Pandya hit two fours and a six over long on to help Mumbai chase down the target with an over remaining. Pollard finished on 15 off seven, while Pandya scored a 30-ball 40.

Mumbai win their first game of the UAE leg

For the most successful team in Indian T20 League history, this was only the first win in four games played in the UAE. Chennai beat Mumbai by 20 runs in the first game, Kolkata beat them by seven wickets in the second game, but the most embarrassing loss came to Bangalore, when they lost by 54 runs after being on the receiving end of Harshal Patel’s hat-trick. Chasing 166, Mumbai were bundled out on only 111, which was a big hit to their net run rate. With a win over Punjab, Mumbai have now moved up to the fifth position on the points table and will have to win all their three remaining games to make it to the playoffs without depending on any other team’s results.

Also read: Indian T20 League Weekend Season Ticket – The Deal Keeps on Getting Better

Umaima Saeed
A writer who primarily writes on cricket. As of 2021, she has covered cricket for more than a dozen publications.

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