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Malinga leads show as MI restrict KKR to 133/7



Mumbai, May 5: Lasith Malinga snared three wickets as Mumbai Indians restricted Kolkata Knight Riders to 133/7 in a crucial Indian Premier League clash at the Wankhede Stadium here on Sunday.

Asked to bat first, KKR paid the price for poor decision-making as Robin Uthappa and Dinesh Karthik (3) wasted a lot of deliveries in the middle overs while Andre Russell, who was out for a first-ball duck, was not sent in to bat at No 4 after Chris Lynn (41; 29b; 2×4 4×6) had given them a steady start.

Uthappa played as many as 24 dot balls in his woeful 40 off 47 balls (1×4, 3×6) before Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma took his catch at cover off Jasprit Bumrah in the last over.

Bumrah got another wicket in the very next ball, the last of the innings as Hardik Pandya caught Rinku Singh (4).

Besides Malinga who leaked 35 runs in his four overs, Hardik also returned superb figures of 2/20 in three overs with Bumrah ending with 2/31. Mitchell McClenaghan did not get a wicket but gave away just 19 runs in his four overs as the hosts capped a spectacular bowling display.

After managing just five runs off the first two overs, KKR raced to 49/0 in the Powerplay overs, largely due to Chris Lynn who took on Malinga and Rahul Chahar to continue his good form with the bat.

But the introduction of Hardik Pandya did the damage as the World Cup-bound India allrounder removed both openers in quick succession with two brilliantly executed slower deliveries.

First Gill was trapped in front in the 7th over and then Lynn holed out to wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock, trying to go for a big shot.

Uthappa and Karthik then failed to keep the momentum going as Russell watched on from the dugout

The pair mustered only six runs between overs 9-11 with Uthappa failing to connect any of McClenaghan's six balls in the 12th over which ended up being a maiden.

After scoring just nine runs off 21 balls, Uthappa finally found some relief by hitting Malinga for a six in the 13th over, the first boundary for KKR after 39 balls.

In the same over, Karthik, also struggling to get going, was caught by Krunal Pandya at midwicket. But the body blow came in the final ball of the over when Malinga set up Russell with with a bouncer from around the stumps, the ball brushing the gloves on the way through to de Kock behind the stumps.

Nitish Rana played a 13-ball 26 run cameo before Malinga had him caught at by Keiron Pollard at long off.

Brief scores: Kolkata Knight Riders: 133/7 in 20 overs (Chris Lynn 41, Robin Uthappa 40; Lasith Malinga 3/35, Hardik Pandya 2/20, Jasprit Bumrah 2/31)

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