Pollard and Buttler smash Mumbai to victory


An electric partnership between Kieron Pollard and Jos Buttler steered Mumbai Indians to a comfortable six-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League.

Lokesh Rahul's unbeaten 68 helped Challengers recover from a slow start in Bangalore to post 151-4 from their 20 overs.

However, Ambati Rayudu's 44 set the foundations before Pollard (35 not out) and Buttler (29no) combined for 55 off just 3.3 overs to help the visitors over the line with eight balls to spare.

Defeat means Challengers face an uphill task to reach the play-offs, while Mumbai solidify their own top-four ambitions.

Challengers were hindered when they lost dangermen Virat Kohli (7) and Chris Gayle (5) early doors, but AB de Villiers (24) and Rahul steadied the ship.

De Villiers played a measured innings although he demonstrated his exciting style with a pull over midwicket for six, but he was caught off guard by a slower one from Krunal Pandya that popped to Rayudu.

Rahul was in supreme form and scored 15 off Mitchell McClenaghan in the 15th over before hitting the same bowler for six in the final over, Sachin Baby (25) provided a useful foil.

Parthiv Patel (1) fell early in Mumbai's chase, but Rohit Sharma (25) and Rayudu put on 58 for the second wicket, before the former's attempted slog over long on found the safe hands of De Villiers.

Rayudu soon responded with a huge six that seemingly hit a window, but when he fell to Varun Aaron in the 16th over Challengers thought they had a sniff.

The threat was soon ended, though. Pollard attacked Shane Watson in the 17th over with 16 runs including a six and a four, while Buttler was typically attacking in his approach.

Buttler smashed England team-mate Chris Jordan for two maximums in the 18th over, before finishing the job with a hammer blow of a six over long on off Aaron.