Ben Stokes proved his worth for the Rising Pune Supergiant with a mesmerising penultimate over against Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya that went for just seven runs. The England all-rounder bowled his heart out in a four-over spell that went for just 21 runs and yielded two important wickets.
Rohit Sharma returned to some spectacular form with a wonderful half-century that seemed enough to help Mumbai over the line till the final few overs. His 58 off 39 balls ended when he returned a catch to Jaydev Unadkat in the final over with 11 required off the final three balls.
Earlier, Harbhajan Singh had helped restrict Pune to a below par total but with a little dew on offer and the Pune bowlers using the slower balls and cutters to good effect, the chase got difficult.
Rohit Sharma, however, took over the mantle from Nitish Rana and looked in ominous touch. He smashed leg-spinner, Imran Tahir, who was brought on immediately as he entered given his woes against leggies this season. The South African saw two fours hit in his first over and whilst he was greeted with a four and a six off his second. Tahir, however, returned to dismiss Kieran Pollard at a crucial time.
Stokes had been sensational with the ball all night, delivering a maiden upfront that included the prized scalp of his England teammate, Jos Buttler. He picked up Karn Sharma off the first ball of his second over and continued to keep things tight. But the penultimate over bowled by Stokes turned out to be the real turning point of the game as Mumbai were cruising to the target with Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya at the crease.
The turning point
It takes something special to deliver a perfect over at the death and Stokes did it tonight for Pune with Mumbai needing 24 to win from the last two overs. Here is how the fateful 19th over of innings unfolded.
Over 18.1 - Stokes to Rohit - 1lb
A full delivery angled onto Rohit's pads. The Mumbaikar failed make contact and the ball rolled away for a leg bye.
Over 18.2 - Stokes to Pandya - 1 wide
A delivery angling down leg was left alone by Hardik Pandya.
Over 18.2 - Stokes to Pandya - 1
A near-perfect yorker that Pandya somehow managed to dig out for a single.
Over 18.3 - Stokes to Rohit - 1
Another excellent full ball that Rohit cannot get underneath. The ball is dug out to cover for yet another single.
Over 18.4 - Stokes to Pandya - 1
Back of the length slow off-cutter from Stokes has Pandya completely fooled. He inside edges it onto his pads for a run.
Over 18.5 - Stokes to Rohit - 1
Perfect inswinging yorker that Rohit manages to squeeze out for just a single.
Over 18.6 - Stokes to Pandya - 1
Another near yorker that Pandya cannot get away. Rolls off his bat to square leg for a run.
The seven run over gave Jaydev Unadkat 17 to defend off the final over and he did it for Pune despite a couple of sixes from Rohit Sharma and Harbhajan Singh.