Rohit Sharma's Mumbai Indians were in inspirational form on the field on Wednesday night as they bowled Lucknow Super Giants out for 101, in an innings that included three run outs.
The 81-run victory in the Eliminator now means Mumbai play Gujarat Titans in Friday's Qualifier 2, for a spot in Sunday's title match against Chennai Super Kings.
Mumbai elected to bat first and posted 182/8 after Naveen ul Haq picked up a haul of four wickets that included the scalps of Rohit Sharma, Cameron Green, Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Verma.
His may have been a match-winning performance had it not been for Mumbai pacer Akash Madhwal who had a magical night picking 5/5 in 3.3 overs. Lucknow in fact were 68/2 in eight overs at one point, but from there, their chase just crumbled as they were bowled out for 101 in 16.3 overs.
Mumbai Batted First, Posted 182/8
Electing to bat first, Mumbai were off to a flying start against spin from Krunal Pandya and Krishnappa Gowtham. Ishan Kishan smashed three early boundaries while Rohit too started with a six and a four.
Lucknow gained success via pace when Rohit danced out of his crease to loft, but hit straight to extra cover off Naveen. Green was up and running immediately with a cut for four and was lucky in getting another boundary off an outside edge.
In the next over, Kishan fell after nicking behind while trying to cut off Thakur. But Green feasted on full and short balls from Krunal to hit three beautiful boundaries, followed by timing the drive in the gap off him between mid-off and cover for another four.
Suryakumar, who got off the mark with a ramp off Thakur for six in the power-play, repeated the shot off Mohsin for the same result, with Green pulling the pacer ferociously for another maximum.
Naveen brought out the knockout punch in the 11th over -- an off cutter foxed Suryakumar and got him to hole out to long-off, followed by another slower delivery castling Green through the gate. It caused a slowdown as Mumbai got only 26 runs off the next four overs, though Tilak launched Ravi Bishnoi for a huge six over deep mid-wicket.
The left-hander went on to pull Naveen for a six, before Tim David joined the party with a square-drive four off Thakur in the 17th over. But the pacer bounced back in the same over as David holed out on a full toss to long-on, followed by Tilak getting out in the same fashion in the next over off Naveen.
Wadhera swept Thakur twice for fours and pulled a six over deep square leg to take Mumbai above 180 in the final over, before slicing to deep point on the last ball of the innings.
Wadhera Stars in Chase
Chasing 183, Mumbai made the breakthrough in the second over as Madhwal had Lucknow's Prerak Mankad slicing to deep point. Two overs later, Kyle Mayers miscued pull to mid-on off Chris Jordan.
Mumbai could have got their third wicket had Nehal Wadhera not misjudged the catch of Marcus Stoinis while running in from deep cover in the fifth over. And that drop catch could have proven to be a dangerous one as from there, Stoinis swung off Cameron Green for four, before pulling twice off Hrithik Shokeen for back-to-back boundaries through square leg and mid-wicket.
He followed it up with a straight six down the ground as 18 runs came off the last over of power-play. But he was losing support from the other end as Krunal holed out to long-on of Piyush Chawla in the ninth over.
Madhwal's return in the tenth over truly broke the game open for Mumbai -- Ayush Badoni's off-stump was sent for a cartwheel ride, followed by Nicholas Pooran nicking behind to keeper to fall for a golden duck.
A collision with Deepak Hooda while taking the second run resulted in Stoinis being run-out in the 12th over, followed by Krishnappa Gowtham being run-out in the next over. Madhwal had Ravi Bishnoi caught at long-on, before another horrible mix-up resulted in Hooda being run-out.
In his final over, Madhwal completed his five-fer with a yorker hitting the base of Mohsin Khan's off-stump to seal a dominating and emphatic win for Mumbai.