T20 World Cup dreams as all-rounder Stoinis shines in IPL

LUCKNOW (INDIA): All-rounder Marcus Stoinis smashed 62 after he took a wicket on Tuesday to guide Lucknow Super Giants to an IPL win on the eve of Australia's T20 World Cup team announcement.

Stoinis top-scored in Lucknow's modest chase of 145 against Mumbai Indians as the home team achieved their target with four wickets and four balls to spare.

Australia's T20 team will be announced Wednesday morning and Stoinis, after one of his previous IPL matches, said, "I'd like to play and contribute."

Lucknow moved to third spot in the 10-team table led by Rajasthan Royals. Five-time winners Mumbai remained ninth above wooden spooners Royal Challengers Bengaluru.

Lucknow skipper KL Rahul fell for 28, hours after being snubbed by India's selectors, who on Tuesday afternoon named the team for the T20 World Cup in June.

Mumbai skipper Hardik Pandya was named deputy to India captain Rohit Sharma for the World Cup in the West Indies and the US, but the star all-rounder fell for a duck and his team to their seventh loss in 10 matches.

"Sometimes you will be down, sometimes you will be up, just that you got to give it your all," Pandya said. "Looks difficult but a lot of things that you can learn from this game."

Birthday boy Rohit, who turned 37, Japsrit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav are three of the four players from Mumbai to make the Indian team for the World Cup starting June 2.

Mumbai managed 144-7 courtesy Nehal Wadhera's 46 and an unbeaten 18-ball 35 by Tim David after being invited to bat first.

Pandya said Wadhera will "play a lot of IPL and (represent) India eventually."

Lucknow left-arm quick Mohsin Khan took two wickets after he struck first with the wicket of Rohit, who was caught out for four by Stoinis at extra cover.

Stoinis got the key wicket of Yadav for 10 and Mumbai were soon 27-4 when Naveen-ul-Haq got Pandya, who took two wickets with his pace bowling, for a first-ball duck.

"Nice to bowl with the new ball," said the man of the match Stoinis, who returned bowling figures of 1-19 from his three overs. "As someone who is not quick, I can try to shape the ball."

Stoinis turned up with the bat to raise his second fifty – he has also hit a century – of the season.

He fell to Afghanistan spinner Mohammad Nabi after his 45-ball knock laced with seven fours and two sixes.

Lucknow lost two more wickets to raise Mumbai's hopes of a turnaround, but Nicholas Pooran steered the team home in the final over. -- AFP

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