In Thursday’s thrilling match of IPL 2024, Punjab Kings batter Ashutosh Sharma nearly pulled off the impossible when he smashed 61 off 28 balls after coming as a number eight batter and threatened to take his team over the line in a chase of 193. But in the 18th over, he was dismissed by Gerald Coetzee and that was enough for Mumbai Indians to eke out a narrow nine-run win. MI skipper Hardik Pandya admitted that the nerves of everyone in the field were tested and that Ashutosh, playing his first IPL season, was unbelievable. IPL 2024: Mumbai Indians Skipper Hardik Pandya Fined for Slow Over-Rate Offence.

"(It was) a very good game of cricket. I think everyone's nerves got tested. We did speak, before the game, that our character will be checked in this game and I don't think anything else was there except that. (When Punjab were 14/4) it was natural that you think you are ahead of the game. But at the same point of time, we knew that the IPL has a tendency to produce games like this where the opposition can make a comeback and how, and it was exactly like that."

PBKS vs MI IPL 2024 Stat Highlights

"(Ashutosh was) unbelievable. Coming and playing like that and hitting almost every ball off the middle of the bat and at ease, knowing what he wants to do. It's wonderful. Very happy for him, just for his future," said Hardik after the match.

The win also means that MI are now at seventh place in the points table, though they are still in the bottom half. They will next face Rajasthan Royals at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium on Monday evening. "We did speak in the timeout, that what it does not matter how good we look, we'll make sure that we keep scrapping and we keep fighting in this game." Viral Video Shows Akash Madhwal Avoiding Captain Hardik Pandya During Discussion and Listening to Rohit Sharma in PBKS vs MI IPL 2024 Match.

"Yes, there are a lot of areas which in the bowling we can look at and make sure that we don't bowl those soft balls, which we gave as well. Yes, the batters kind of played really good shots but, at the same point of time, we were quite soft in certain departments and certain overs, and that kind of cost us (taking it) this far in the game but nevertheless, a win is a win," concluded Hardik.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 19, 2024 12:27 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website