A special innings from Dwayne Smith gave Mumbai Indians the impetus to spoil Kolkata Knight Riders’ victory bid in the Wednesday’s Pepsi IPL-VI match at the Eden Gardens.

Playing his second match of the season, Smith hammered KKR’s two promising spinners — Iqbal Abdulla and Sachithra Senanayake — to set the platform for the other batsmen to finish the job with a ball to spare.

MI captain Rohit Sharma, who was asked to lead after Ricky Ponting opted out from the playing XI, was all praise for the West Indian.

“Dwayne is someone who gives us a lot of options. He can be dangerous with the bat, which he showed today; he can bowl and is a good fielder as well. He did the job for us and made fantastic use of the opportunity,” Rohit said.

On Ponting, he said it was the Aussie’s decision to sit out. “It needs a lot of heart and guts to take such a decision. He was the one who stood up for this move keeping in mind the team balance,” Rohit said.

Important victory

“It is a very important victory for us. We have been winning at home but it was important for us to win away games. This is the third match on the trot away from home,” he said.

KKR’s ace bowler, Sunil Narine was ecstatic about dismissing Sachin Tendulkar but was disappointed at the defeat.

“It is a great wicket, but the defeat is a big disappointment. We just have to go back and train harder,” he saidKKR captain Gautam Gambhir had a different take on the team’s loss. “It is not that we are playing too poorly and losing. Despite playing some very good cricket we are unfortunately finishing on the wrong end,” he pointed out.

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