Rohit Sharma was a relieved captain after Mumbai Indians’ nerve-wrecking three-run victory over Kings XI Punjab at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday (May 16) night.
With this win, the defending champions kept their playoff hopes alive while KXIP went one place down on the points table to sixth.
Speaking at the post-match presentation ceremony, Rohit said: "Holding up nicely. After a win, obviously you feel good. I thought we played a perfect game. Whatever we asked from the boys, they came and delivered in the middle."
After being put into bat, MI rode on Kieron Pollard’s blazing 23-ball 50 (5 fours and 3 sixes) to put 186/8 on the board. In reply, KXIP were cruising with KL Rahul smashing the Mumbai bowlers to all parts of the ground.
However, Jasprit Bumrah had a different plan in mind as he removed Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis in the 17th over to change the course of the game. One over later, Bumrah dented Punjab even further by getting rid of the ominous Rahul on 94 off 60 balls (10 fours and 3 sixes).
Bumrah, who was deservedly adjudged Man of the Match, finished with the figures of 4-0-15-3 as MI restricted KXIP to 183/5 in 20 overs to secure the thriller.
"Pollard has always been a match-winner for us. Leaving him out was a tough decision. We thought now was the time to bring him back. Not to take anything away from Duminy who hasn't got opportunities. We thought if he's batting down the order, Pollard will be the better option for us. Come the big game, Pollard stands up for us. He was disappointed at being left out. What he did with the bat today, that's what he does," Rohit remarked.
Lauding Bumrah’s stellar effort with the ball, the MI skipper said: “Bumrah has come a long way the past two years. He's worked really hard on his bowling. Not easy to come out and bowl the way he does. He's the one who's taken the responsibility. Always Malinga will be missed, but since he's gone, we've known Bumrah is the one to take the charge. He might not be up there in the wickets column, but what he does for us is very very important. Coming out and bowling at difficult times to a batsman who's set, that's what we require from him.”
Mumbai Indians will take on the Delhi Daredevils in their last playoff game at the Feroz Shah Kotla on Sunday (May 20).