We know sky is the limit in the last four overs,” said Mumbai Indians all-rounder Kieron Pollard after adding 67 runs in 23 balls with his big-hitting comrade, Hardik Pandya, in the IPL here on Thursday.
After skipper Rohit Sharma laid the foundation with a 45-ball 70, the duo of Pollard and Pandya smashed fours and sixes at will, lifting MI to 191 for four from 83 for three in the 14th over.
In reply, Kings XI Punjab were stopped at 143 for eight.
Pollard, who was adjudged the Man of the Match, said: “It’s about what’s there in front of you. Look at the bowlers and see how many you want to get, 15 off the over and then you try to go hard.
“Today Hardik had to come and swing and he showed his prowess. We know sky is the limit in the last four overs.”
MI had scored 25 runs in the final over with Pollard sending spinner Krishnappa Gowtham’s last three balls into the stands of the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Kings XI Punjab captain KL Rahul admitted they might need to play an extra bowler, saying an all-rounder would be a good addition to his team, which suffered its third defeat in the 13th IPL.
“I won’t say it is frustrating, but obviously, it is disappointing,” Rahul said at the post-match presentation ceremony after KXIP were stopped at 143 for eight while chasing 192.
“Looking back, we could have been three wins out of four. This game, we made some mistakes. Important we come back stronger. Wicket looked good with the new ball. Don’t know if it slowed up after that.
“Another bowling option would be nice — an all-rounder option who can bat and bowl well. We will be sitting with the coaches to decide if we want to play an extra bowler.”
For Punjab, Mohammed Shami, Sheldon Cottrell, Ravi Bishnoi have fared well in the bowling department, but K Gowtham and Jimmy Neesham proved to be expensive.
Winning captain Rohit Sharma said that his team tried to capitalise on Punjab’s attack weaknesses at the death.
“It was a great win. We didn’t start really well, but we always knew with the kind of attack Punjab had we wanted to capitalise,” he said.
Rohit was full of praise for Pollard and Hardik.
“Those two guys they back themselves to get the runs, it’s nice to have them in form as well,” Rohit said.
With Punjab having in their ranks Rahul and Mayank Agarwal — both of whom have scored a century in this IPL — Rohit said it “wasn’t going to be easy with the ball” against their batting line-up.
“We knew we had to get early wickets and everything went to plan, credit to the bowlers. The last game the execution wasn’t exactly right at the death with the ball (MI lost a super over to RCB). So we discussed and wanted to improve,” he said.
“I haven’t played enough with Boult and Pattinson, so it’s difficult to get them on the same page. They have now got an idea of what I need from them and I got to know them better too. Feels nice to get the runs, but the two points matter more.”