Malinga sets up easy Mumbai win
Lasith Malinga led a meticulous bowling display as the Mumbai Indians claimed a comfortable five-wicket victory over the Deccan Chargers in their Indian Premier League clash at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday.
The Sri Lanka paceman ended with 4-16 and was given superb support by all the other bowlers, including Harbhajan Singh (2-13) and James Franklin (2-18) with the visitors shot out for 100 in 18.4 overs.
Shikhar Dhawan was the top-scorer for the league’s bottom side after he made 29 off 32 deliveries, while Proteas batsman JP Duminy battled his way to an unbeaten 25 off 24 on what appeared to be a slightly slow pitch.
Dale Steyn gave Deccan hope courtesy of a breathtaking spell in which he claimed 2-10 in four overs, but he was fighting a lone hand for most parts and Rohit Sharma’s 42 off 48 helped guide Mumbai home with 11 deliveries to spare.
The visitors, who were asked to bat first by Mumbai, made a decent start thanks to Parthiv Patel and Dhawan.
The two openers put on 37 for the first wicket in a little over five overs.
Their partnership was broken when RP Singh outfoxed Patel with a slightly slower delivery that was chipped meekly to Munaf Patel (1-20) at mid-on for 19 off 18.
It all went wrong from there as Ishank Jaggi (two) top-edged the outstanding Harbhajan to Munaf at mid-off, while Malinga accounted for Cameron White for a first-ball duck -- the Deccan captain slashing straight to Singh at third-man.
That left the total on 44 for three, and after eventually going past
50 in the 10th over, there were more quick wickets for Mumbai.
Top-scorer Dhawan thought he had the measure of Harbhajan when he danced down the track and was stumped by Dinesh Karthik, before Franklin struck twice in the 13th over to leave Deccan in tatters.
One of those wickets was via a splendid catch by Sharma at point when he had little time to react to a Daniel Christian (five) cut, with the other man to go being Bharat Chipli (one).
Another splendid catch by Sharma, who ran back from point, accounted for Ashish Reddy (10) off Munaf (1-23), with Duminy eventually running out of partners as his side managed to set a below-par 101.
Steyn, who bowled with pace and aggression up front, provided Deccan with the perfect start when he went straight through the defences of countryman Richard Levi and bowled him for a first-ball duck.
But once the Proteas spearhead was out of the attack after a two-over spell, the pressure was released on the Indians.
His opening partner Veer Pratap Singh also showed some good discipline and was unlucky not to get Sharma in the second over when White failed to hold on to a tough chance that raced high above his head at cover.
But the teenager did get Sachin Tendulkar (14) in his third over, pouched by Christian at slip.
Steyn returned to bowl the ninth over and had Karthik (two) caught behind by wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel, before Mumbai went past 50 an over later.
It could have gotten worse for the hosts when the fast bowler’s penultimate delivery was struck by Franklin straight to third man where Amit Mishra grassed a sitter.
But both fell in quick succession to Duminy and Reddy respectively, Franklin falling for 13 with 20 needed from 23.
However, Ambati Rayudu struck an unbeaten 19 off 15 to guide Mumbai home and into second place on the log.
MUMBAI INDIANS: RE Levi, SR Tendulkar, RG Sharma, KD Karthik (wk), AT Rayudu, JEC Franklin, RJ Peterson, Harbhajan Singh (capt), SL Malinga, RP Singh, MM Patel
DECCAN CHARGERS: PA Patel (wk), S Dhawan, CL White (capt), DT Christian, JP Duminy, IR Jaggi, B Chipli, A Ashish Reddy, A Mishra, DW Steyn, V Pratap Singh