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MI lose four ties on the trot

Sharjah: Defending champions Mumbai Indians slumped to their fourth consecutive defeat as the Delhi DareDevils dished out a clinical all-round display to record an easy six-wicket win in an IPL VII match, at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, on Sunday.

The DareDevils chased down a modest target of 126 with seven balls to spare with opener Murali Vijay top-scoring with a 34-ball 40 and captain Kevin Pietersen striking form after an injury lay-off with an unbeaten 26 to notch up their second win of the tournament.

The Pietersen-led side, playing their last match of the UAE leg, wobbled towards the end with JP Duminy (19) and Dinesh Karthik (2) falling in the 16th over.

Chasing a small target, the DareDevils made a decent start with the opening stand between Vijay and Quinton de Kock (16) yielding 34 runs. The partnership ended with Michael Hussey pouncing a brilliant catch at point by diving full length and low to his left to remove De Kock off the bowling of Corey Anderson.

Vijay then stitched a 45-run stand for the second wicket with Duminy before he was out in the 13th over. Vijay was bowled as he went for an awful slog. He hit four boundaries and a six in his 34-ball knock.

Pietersen, who looked tentative and rusty during his knock of 16 in his first match two days back, steadied the DareDevils after the quick fall of Duminy and Karthik before steering his side home.

Pietersen hit two fours and a six in his 18-ball unbeaten knock. Kedar Jadhav (14 not out) hit the winning runs — a four — to take the DareDevils to 126 for four and hand Mumbai Indians their fourth defeat on the trot.

The DareDevilsi will now head home to play their next match at the Kotla, on May 3.

For the Mumbai side, who are yet to open account, Lasith Malinga took two wickets for 17 runs while Anderson and Rohit Sharma got a wicket each.

Earlier, the DareDevils bowlers produced a clinical display to restrict Mumbai Indians to a modest 125 for six. Pacers Jaydev Unadkat (2/29) and Wayne Parnell (1/17) and spinner Shahbaz Nadeem (1/19) shared four wickets to strangle Mumbai Indians’ batting unit in their stipulated 20 overs.

Captain Pietersen employed a spin-pace attack early on with Nadeem and Mohammed Shami starting the proceedings for the DareDevils, followed by Duminy and Parnell.