The 26-year-old, who is enjoying the form of his life in the ongoing IPL season, swapped shirts with Mumbai Indians all-rounder Hardik Pandya after a hard-fought match at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday, May 16.
Mumbai Indians had so much to overcome. The likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik and left arm pacer Mitchell McClenaghan will have to bowl cleverly to stop the rampaging KL Rahul and Chris Gayle from scoring big runs. Karun Nair and Mayank Agarwal haven't been amidst the runs lately and perhaps Yuvraj Singh could get a game tonight since the Punjab side need a lot of experience behind their back to recover from a string of defeats.
But Tye was not fazed and he stuck to doing what he does best: bowl the knucke ball.
There are Five teams who will contest for the two remaining playoff spots. They are now in danger of missing out on playoff berth if they fail to win the final two games. For the starters, if MI lose today, they will be out of the IPL.
A mere 207 runs from 12 outings and 291 points on the IPL Moneyball Impact Index neither justify his reputation as a batsman, position as the team captain nor his ₹15 crore salary deal with the IPL Mumbai franchisee.
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Explaining his thought process of bowling the penultimate over, Bumrah said, "In three hours, I believe a player doesn't become bad", he opined. The good news for them is that they've had a decent run over the past few games, while their opponents have been spiralling down.
While the Mumbai team celebrated, it was heartbreaking for the Punjab team especially for KL Rahul who made a stunning 94 runs in just 60 balls. Soon, in the 19th over Rahul lost his wicket to Bumrah. Mumbai put up a total of 186 for the loss of 8 wickets.
But Pollard and Krunal Pandya (32) revived the innings with a 65-run fifth-wicket stand in six overs before Punjab hit back.
Considering that, Rohit Sharma may not mind facing a side that is propped on the shoulders of two batsmen. Batting at No. 6, Pollard unleashed a 23-ball 50, studded with five fours, three sixes, some emotional punches and celebrations. Rahul and Aaron Finch (46 off 35) had added 111 in just over 12 overs. Bowling the 17th over he leaked just 4 runs and scalped the wickets of Finch and Marcus Stoinis (1).
KL Rahul must be getting exhausted. We were in the chase all along, it was a professional batting performance. Again, he mixed it up well with length balls, short deliveries and slower ones.