KARACHI: Sachin Tendulkar smashed his fifth half-century in the Indian Premier League (IPL) as Mumbai Indians hit form again to beat Rajasthan Royals by 37 runs and become the first team to qualify for the semi-finals.
Tendulkar, the leading run-scorer in the current tournament with 512, smashed 89 off only 59 balls to guide Mumbai to a competitive 174. He was ably supported by J.P. Duminy (31) and Kieron Pollard (25) as none of the Rajasthan bowlers bar Shane Watson (three for 37) were able to make an impression. Both teams carried on from where they left off at the interval as Rajasthan lost three wickets inside the first three overs. They failed to recover from that disaster and were soon reduced to 87 for seven in the 15th over.
With another 88 required off only 34 balls, it proved too much for Aditya Dole and Abhishek Raut who added 50 for the eighth wicket in the lost cause. Mumbai, with eight wins out of 11, sit at the top of the standings while Rajasthan are at fourth with six wins and equal number of losses.