Kieron Pollard led a disciplined Mumbai Indians bowling attack with three wickets for 28 as the visitors crushed Royal Challengers Bangalore by 57 runs in an IPL match here on Saturday.
Table toppers Mumbai Indians gleefully accepted the home side’s offer to bat first and posted a huge 191 for four and then restricted Bangalore to 134 for nine to post their 10th win from 13 matches at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Chasing an intimidating 192 for a win, Bangalore top order crumbled under tight Mumbai bowling with none of them coming up with a big score in the match which was delayed by one hour due to low intensity explosions outside the stadium 45 minutes before the start.
Virat Kohli top-scored with a brave 24-ball 37 but all his batting colleagues had a collective failure in their last league match.
Manish Pandey (16), Jacques Kallis (14), Kevin Pietersen (21), Rahul Dravid (16), Robin Uthappa (4) and Ross Taylor (9) failed to click under a disciplined bowling effort from Mumbai.
The home side were never in the run chase with their openers Pandey and Kallis back in the hut with just 31 on board in the sixth over before Dravid was out in the ninth over.
When Pietersen and Uthappa fell in successive overs — in the 11th and 12th — and then Taylor followed suit in the 15th it was all over for Bangalore whose top six contributed just 97 runs.
All the five Mumbai bowlers took at least a wicket with Pollard being the most successful with three wickets for 28 from his four overs.
Dilhara Fernando and Harbhajan Singh took two wickets apiece by conceding 24 and 28 runs respectively from four overs each. Zaheer Khan and Ryan McLaren chipped in with a wicket each.
With this win, Mumbai, who have already qualified for the semi-finals, increased the gap with other teams taking their points tally to 20 with one league match yet to play.
Bangalore, who slumped to their seventh loss today, will have to wait for the results of other league matches as the other three last-four slots are likely to be decided by net run rates.
Bangalore ended their league engagements with 14 points and a net run rate of plus 0.219.
Earlier, Ambati Rayudu’s 46 and JP Duminy’s blistering 19-ball 42 powered Mumbai Indians to a formidable 191 for four.
Mumbai Indians got off to a sedate start with Sachin Tendulkar (19) and Ryan McLaren (40) raising 34 in six overs.
The early dismissal of Tendulkar, caught by Ross Taylor off Jacques Kallis, brought Rayudu to the crease.
The talented youngster wasted no time in taking the fight into the Bangalore camp, taking 22 runs off a Pankaj Singh over to set the pace for the rest of the match.
Rayudu disdainfully smashed Anil Kumble twice into the stands at long on before he was caught and bowled by Kallis.
Kieron Pollard began with great flourish, effortlessly smashing three successive sixes of Pankaj Singh, who conceded a whopping 54 runs from his quota of four overs.
Fortunately for Bangalore, Pollard lasted just seven deliveries, Kumble nailing him in front of the sticks as the powerful West Indian ventured to play across the line.
Though a rather sedate McLaren, who enjoyed two reprieves at 2 and 24, fell to Kevin Pietersen, Pollard’s aggression seemed to have had rubbed off on the Jean Paul Duminy.
The diminutive left-hander went berserk in the end overs, blasting three sixes and three fours.