Lucknow Super Giants hammer Mumbai Indians by 18 runs after Rohit Sharma’s sparkly 68 in IPL | Crickit
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Lucknow Super Giants hammer Mumbai Indians by 18 runs after Rohit Sharma’s sparkly 68 in IPL

PTI |
May 18, 2024 12:34 AM IST

Lucknow Super Giants hammer Mumbai Indians by 18 runs after Rohit Sharma’s sparkly 68 in IPL

Mumbai, Rohit Sharma saved his best for the last but that wasn’t enough to stop another woeful chapter being added to Mumbai Indians' already nightmare of an IPL season, which ended in a last-place finish following a disappointing 18-run defeat to Lucknow Super Giants, here on Friday.

Lucknow Super Giants hammer Mumbai Indians by 18 runs after Rohit Sharma’s sparkly 68 in IPL
Lucknow Super Giants hammer Mumbai Indians by 18 runs after Rohit Sharma’s sparkly 68 in IPL

After Rohit smacked his way to a 38-ball 68 to set a strong platform in pursuit of 215, Mumbai’s batters failed to keep momentum going in middle overs and finished at 196 for six in 20 overs to hand LSG a much-needed win.

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For LSG, who needed a victory over MI and other results over the weekend to go their way to make an improbable entry into the playoffs, reached the sixth spot but their net run rate only improving marginally to -0.667.

Apart from Rohit’s brilliance at the top, the young Naman Dhir gave a fine exhibition of his talent with a half-century but it came when all was lost and there was no pressure on him.

Dhir struck five sixes and four fours in a late assault which only reduced the margin of defeat for his side to a large extent.

This season, in all likelihood, marks the end of Rohit's 14-year journey with Mumbai Indians. It would also be interesting to see if likes of Suryakumar Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah agree on retention or go back to the auction pool.

Additionally, the move to bring in Hardik as skipper at the expense of a five-time champion captain Rohit proved to be a harakiri during a season where the new man only received boos wherever he went.

Even on Friday, as Rohit's most entertaining knock of the season ended, the Wankhede crowd was ready to give their 'skipper' a standing ovation which turned into incessant hooting the moment designated skipper entered the turf. The MI faithfuls time and again showed that Hardik Pandya was the captain but Rohit Sharma is their leader.

While LSG, riding on Pooran's pulverising 75 off 29 balls got 214 for 6, MI never looked in hunt once Rohit was dismissed.

Even though he endured a barren run in between season, Rohit ended as MI’s third highest run-getter.

The defeat on Friday also confirmed Mumbai Indians’ last-place finish for the second time in last three editions, with 2022 iteration being the first.

Coming off a torrid run of six outings wherein he could not impose himself the way he had at the start of this IPL, Rohit found rhythm and the runs flowed finally for the MI veteran seamlessly.

Before a short rain-forced interruption, Rohit hit Matt Henry for two sixes on the trot to make intentions clear and when the play resumed, he went after Mohsin Khan to hit two consecutive fours.

The shot of the innings, however, was when Rohit danced down the track to hit Mohsin over his head to bang the sight-screen and bring up his fifty.

Rohit’s innings eventually ended on 68 with 10 fours and three sixes — one that was punctuated with regular chants of ‘Rohit… Rohit’ and a standing ovation when he trudged back to the pavilion.

However, MI’s rapid start came to a screeching halt with three wickets in quick succession.

Dewald Brevis tried to match Rohit in the scoring rate with a few boundaries of his own but shortly after hitting Naveen-ul-Haq over midwicket for a six, he failed to connect well on a full toss outside the off-stump.

Krunal Pandya covered several yards with a hard sprint on his left to take a fine diving catch and bring LSG some respite, as MI had motored on scoring more than 10 runs an over.

Suryakumar Yadav went for a slog but found Ravi Bishnoi’s juggling act ending his innings for a four-ball duck, soon after which LSG took complete control.

Earlier, Pooran’s whirlwind 75 off 29 balls covered for skipper KL Rahul’s sedate 55, providing a much-needed impetus to Lucknow Super Giants' impressive total of 214 for 6.

Struggling for momentum on what appeared to be a two-paced wicket at the start, LSG could only manage 69 for 3 at the halfway stage but Pooran’s stunning knock made up for another shoddy powerplay effort by Rahul, who was unable to change his game.

This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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