New Zealand speedster Trent Boult's four-wicket haul and an unbeaten 116-run opening stand between Ishan Kishan and Quinton de Kock steered the reigning Mumbai Indians (MI) stroll to a 10-wicket win over Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Friday, and go atop the Indian Premier League (IPL) points table.
Going by their poor form -- this was their first defeat by 10 wickets in IPL history -- three-time champions CSK are virtually out, but they still have a mathematical chance of qualifying for the playoffs. Mahendra Singh Dhoni's team now has six points from 11 matches, out of which they have lost eight, and are now placed at the bottom of the eight-team table.
With Friday's comprehensive win, three-time champions Mumbai have gone atop the table with 14 points. Although Delhi Capitals and Royals Challengers Bangalore also have 14 points, they are placed second and third respectively on net run rate.
After winning the toss, the MI bowlers came all gun blazing on a batting-friendly Sharjah track as they restricted their opponentsto 114/9 wickets in 20 overs, thanks to Boult, who wreaked havoc with stunning figures of 4/18 from his quota of four overs.
Boult received able support from teammates Jasprit Bumrah and Rahul Chahar, who bagged two wickets each conceding 25 and 22 runs respectively.
The three-time champions, who suffered a batting collapse, had made as many as three changes in their playing XI. However, the decision backfired as just three of their batters -- Sam Curran (52), Dhoni (16) and Shardul Thakur (11) -- were able to touch the double digit.
CSK lost their top six batsmen with just 30 runs on board. However, it was Curran's patience with the bat which helped him notch-up up a half-century besides taking his side past the 100-run mark.
In return, MI openers Quinton de Kock (46 not out) and Ishan Kishan (68 not out) made light of the small target as their unbeaten 116-run stand drove the team home quite comfortably with 46 balls to spare.
The two handed an ideal start to MI, taking their side to 52 runs in the initial six overs before adding another 46 runs in the next four overs to inch closer to victory. In the process, Kishan also completed his half-century off 29 balls.
de Kock put the final nail in the coffin, smashing Thakur for a boundary over square-leg to garner MI's seventh win of the season. The South African stumper's innings contained five boundaries and couple of sixes while Kishan's knock was laced with six fours and five maximums.
Brief scores: CSK 114/9 wkts in 20 overs (Sam Curran 52, MS Dhoni 15; Trent Boult 4/18) lost to MI 116/0 wkt in 12.2 overs (Ishan Kishan 68 not out, Quinton de Kock 46 not out; Hazlewood 0/17) by 10 wkts - IANS