Rohit Sharma Mumbai Indians
Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma during the CLT20 game against the Perth ScorchersShaun Roy/CLT20/SPORTZPICS

It was win, and win by some margin, or go home for the IPL champions Mumbai Indians.

Well, you know the script - smash, bang, thank you ma'am and the Mumbai Indians have reached the target with six balls to spare and off they go into the semifinals.

The Mumbai Indians were always going to be up against it, with the Otago Volts having a much better net run rate than them. Not only did they need to win the game against the Scorchers, they needed to win in such a manner that the run rate goes above the New Zealand side, who to be fair have had a splendid CLT20.

In a brutal assault with the bat - led by skipper and man of the match Rohit Sharma (51 n.o., 24b, 3x4 4x6) - the Mumbai Indians made the target of 150 in 14.2 overs look like a piece of cake, reaching it, just to make sure that they got through, in 13.2 overs with six wickets to spare for good measure.

The Mumbai Indians finished equal on 10 points, the same as Otago, with a net run rate of +1.068. The Volts had to settle for third with a run rate of +0.869. The Rajasthan Royals had already won the group with a perfect 16 points from four matches.

That means a semifinal match for the Mumbai Indians against the winners of Group B, which look like being the Chennai Super Kings - a humdinger of a game awaits there.

The chase began with Sachin Tendulkar, yet again, failing to make an impression with the bat, leaving the T20 specialists to do the job instead.

The Little Master picked out the deep square leg fielder perfectly off Jason Behrendorff in just his second delivery, leaving the crowd at the Feroze Shah Kotla stunned.

They would have plenty to cheer from there on, though, as the Mumbai Indians systematically went about reaching their target of 150 in 5.4 overs, less than the stipulated 20.

First it was Dwayne Smith (48, 25b, 5x3, 3x5) who smashed the ball all around the park, setting it up for Sharma, Pollard and co. nicely.

The plan to bring Glenn Maxwell in and play him at No.3 did not quite work - the Australian falling for just 10 - but it mattered little in the end.

Smith took the game by the scruff of the neck in the opening six overs, as the Mumbai Indians went at well over ten runs an over.

It was 72 for three when Smith got out in the second ball after the mandatory Powerplay, leaving Sharma with plenty to do.

But Sharma seems to transform himself in the colours of the Mumbai Indians, and he played a blazing innings of real note, with Pollard (23, 18b, 2x4, 1x6) and Ambati Rayudu (14, 4b, 2x4) giving him good company until the end as the target was reached with six balls to spare.

Earlier, a nice innings from Sam Whiteman (51, 32b, 6x4, 2x6) propelled the Scorchers to 149 for six from their 20 overs - Yes, the Scorchers had 20 overs to play with, having already been knocked out of the tournament.

Ashton Agar, opening the batting, gave his side a decent platform with his 40-ball 35, before a cameo from Hillton Cartwright (28, 20b, 4x4) and the pulsating innings from Whiteman took them to the eventual final score, despite the struggles of the rest of the batsmen.

With the Mumbai Indians in desperate zone, it was never going to be enough for a win for sure - but even the Scorchers would have expected to take it closer than the eventual 13.2 overs.

Quick Links