Finisher David helps Mumbai past another big IPL target
He didn't have to end up smashing three straight sixes to win this time - but Tim David's finishing prowess has been on view again as he helped the Mumbai Indians successfully chase down another 200-plus target in the IPL.
The real fireworks this time came from the brilliant Indian pair of Ishan Kishan (75 off 41 balls) and Suryakumar Yadav (66 off 31) as the visitors pursued the Punjab Kings' daunting 3-214 in Mohali on Wednesday.
But when David came to the wicket at 3-170, there were still 45 needed off 4.5 overs and as Kishan fell the following over, the onus was on this expert finisher to guide them home, just as he'd done so spectacularly against Rajasthan on Sunday when he hit 18 off the first three balls of the last over.
The West Australian this time found a willing ally in Tilak Varma, with the fifth-wicket pair making a potentially awkward finale look child's play.
David smacked three boundaries in 10 balls to finish 19 not out, while Varma proved even more decisive, smiting three sixes in his 10-ball unbeaten 26.
The pair made it look so straightforward that they still had seven balls to spare when Varma hammered one final straight six off Arshdeep Singh to seal the six-wicket win.
It was a huge disappointment for another Australian, impact sub Nathan Ellis, who looked set to be a potential matchwinner for Punjab when, first, he got rid of his dangerous compatriot Cameron Green, caught at deep mid-wicket (23 off 18), and later had the dazzling Yadav snaffled at short third man.
"I feel Nathan bowled really well but other bowlers didn't step up," said Kings' captain Shikhar Dhawan, praising Ellis for his 2-34 off his allocated four overs.
The Kings' other Aussie Matt Short, the BBL player of the season, made 27 off 26 balls when Punjab batted.
Later, their fireworks came from Liam Livingstone, who hit an unbeaten 82 off 42 balls and took great pleasure from hitting three straight sixes off his England teammate, Jofra Archer, in a mad penultimate over that went for 27.
Earlier, rain prompted a no result between the Lucknow Super Giants and Chennai Super Kings in Lucknow.
Ayush Badoni had scored 59no off 33 balls to help Lucknow reach 7-125 in 19.2 overs before the rain caused the first washout of the IPL season.
The in-form Marcus Stoinis won't forget the match in a hurry as he was bowled for just six after Ravindra Jadeja quite bamboozled him with a Warne-like gem that pitched outside leg and ripped past him to rattle his off stump.