Mumbai Indians [ Images ] bounced back in splendid fashion after losing their previous match and beat Kings XI Punjab [ Images ] by 23 runs to regain the top spot in the Indian Premier League [ Images ], at the Wankhede stadium, in Mumbai, on Monday.
Batting first, half centuries from skipper Sachin Tendulkar [ Images ] and Ambati Rayudu helped them post a competitive 159 for five in 20 overs.
Their bowlers then did a fine job, restricting the visitors to 136 for eight despite a valiant effort from Shaun Marsh [ Images ], who scored 61 off just 47 balls.
Barring a fine innings from Marsh, who struck eight fours, and his 72-run second wicket partnership in 60 balls with opener Paul Valthaty (33 in 38 balls), there was little of note in the Kings XI chase, resulting in their fourth defeat in seven matches.
Man of the match Kieron Pollard, who scored a brisk 20 off 11 balls and took two catches, and Andrew Symonds [ Images ] grabbed a wicket each.
Earlier, Tendulkar and Rayudu scored 51 each and added 95 runs for the second wicket in 72 balls after the home team was asked to take first strike by visiting team skipper Adam Gilchrist [ Images ].
While Rayudu was the more aggressive of the duo and got his runs in 37 balls, including eight fours and one six, Tendulkar struck a six and three fours in his 45-ball essay.
Both were caught in the deep while giving charge.
Later, Kieron Pollard, who hardly got a chance to bat in earlier matches, scored a quickfire 20, inclusive of two sixes and a four, while Rohit Sharma [ Images ] hit a quick 18 in 11 balls before falling off the penultimate ball.
Andrew Symonds (4) remained unconquered at the end with T Suman (0), who did not face a ball.
For the visitors, leg spinner Piyush Chawla [ Images ] and medium pacer Ryan Harris grabbed two wickets each while left-arm slow bowler Bipul Sharma accounted for the other wicket.
Taking a cue from former Australia [ Images ] teammate and Rajathan Royals skipper Shane Warne [ Images ], Kings XI captain Adam Gilchrist attacked Tendulkar and Jacobs with left-arm spin in the first six overs.
Bhargav Bhatt was asked to bowl the first over, in which he gave away just three runs; he was replaced by another left-arm slow bowler Bipul Sharma after bowling just one over.
The move paid dividends as Sharma deceived Davy Jacobs in flight and had him stretch forward and play down the wrong line to a ball that straightened and clipped the off-stump.
Jacobs hit two fours, one an authentic cover drive off Praveen Kumar [ Images ], and the other an edge.
His dismissal saw Ambati Rayudu at the crease.
Tendulkar could not be kept quiet for long though and swept Sharma for a six over square-leg. Rayudu then swept the bowler for a four to help Mumbai reach 35 for one at the end of the six-over Powerplay.
Rayudu leaned back to square drive medium pacer Harris for a four to bring up the 50 of the innings in 52 balls, and then, in the same over, hooked a short ball from the Australian to up the run-rate.
Tendulkar then pulled Sharma for a boundary to complete the 50-run partnership between Mumbai's most successful pair of the season.
They now have four half century-plus partnerships, including twice reaching the three-figure mark.
At the halfway stage of the innings, the score read 67 for one with 32 runs added in the four overs after the field restrictions were lifted.
Rayudu then smashed Praveen Kumar for one six and two fours, all to the straight field when the UP medium pacer came back for his second spell. This stepped up the tempo considerably as 15 runs were scored in the 12th over.
Leggie Chawla was hammered to the extra cover fence for his eighth four before Rayudu departed in trying to clobber the bowler over the mid-wicket boundary. He was caught just inside the fence by Dinesh Karthik [ Images ], who managed to stay inside the ropes while completing the catch in the 15th over.
Tendulkar departed in the 17th over, caught at deep point off a full toss, after adding 20 runs with Pollard, who hoisted Paul Valthaty and Chawla for a six each before being caught off the latter when trying to repeat the shot.
Sharma hit three boundaries in his short innings before he was caught by a diving David Hussey [ Images ] at long-on to give Harris his second wicket.
Mumbai also, like Punjab, commenced the bowling with Harbhajan Singh. The move paid off as the off-spinner trapped Gilchrist leg before, the
Left-hander trying to sweep.
The fifth ball strike, with only one run on the board, put Kings XI on the backfoot, but the home team suffered a setback as Rayudu was injured while fielding, appearing to have twisted his right knee.
He later came back to keep wickets after first-choice stumper Davy Jacobs suffered a thumb injury and had to leave the field.
Shaun Marsh struck the first boundary of the innings by clipping Malinga off his toes and then punched the Lankan bowler through the covers off the very next delivery for his second four.
Valthaty was lucky to see his leading edge not held at point by Munaf Patel off Abu Nechim Ahmed when on three in a score of 16 for one.
Punjab could score only 24 in the first six overs' Powerplay period. The visitors had put up 50 in 53 balls when Valthaty clouted part-time spinner T Suman over the straight field for his first six.
The right-hander clobbered Andrew Symonds -- in his first over of the tournament -- for another six over the straight field before being caught just inside the boundary line by a running Kieron Pollard off the very next ball when he tried to repeat the shot.
The second wicket partnership between Valthaty, who faced 38 balls, and Marsh produced 72 runs in 60 balls.
Mumbai struck another blow six runs later, packing off David Hussey through a brilliant catch by Rohit Sharma, who dived forward when the Australian mistimed an aerial shot off Munaf Patel.
Punjab were reduced to 79 for three.
Dinesh Karthik was trapped leg before by Pollard as he tried to shuffle across and turn to leg which left Kings XI at a difficult 83 for four. Three wickets had gone down for 10 runs in 28 balls.
A partnership of 30 runs in under three overs between Marsh, who was batting beautifully, and Abishek Nayar (14 in 9 balls), raised visions of an improbable win before Harbhajan sent back Nayar, Symonds taking a good catch at cover. It was the offie's second wicket of the game.
Malinga came back to york Bipul Sharma comprehensively to leave Kings XI at a seemingly hopeless 116 for six and the match was as good as over with the departure of Marsh, caught by Tendulkar while pulling Malinga in the next over, and Ryan Harris three balls later.Earlier, Punjab retained the eleven that played in their last tie while Mumbai made a couple of changes, bringing in T Suman for R Satish and medium pacer Abu Nechim for left-arm spinner Ali Murtaza.