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Gayle, bowlers power Royal Challengers Bangalore to nine-wicket win in Mumbai
By IPL desk
Mumbai 10 May 2012
The race to the DLF IPL 2012 playoffs became even more competitive as the Royal Challengers Bangalore beat the Mumbai Indians to move into fourth position in the league standings. After a poor top-order performance from MI saw them post a below-par score of 141, Chris Gayle’s unbeaten 82 off 59 deliveries powered RCB to a nine-wicket win.
It was pacer R Vinay Kumar who did the early damage for RCB. After Virat Kohli, captaining the side in Daniel Vettori’s absence, opted to field first, Vinay Kumar struck twice in the second over to leave MI in all kinds of trouble at two for two. The RCB pacer had James Franklin (1) caught at thirdman by Zaheer Khan, while Rohit Sharma (0) was trapped lbw having faced three deliveries.
Sachin Tendulkar tried to bring MI back into the contest as he hit Vinay Kumar for three consecutive fours in the sixth over. The Mumbai legend, however, failed to convert his start into a long innings as he top-edged a delivery from Harshal Patel back to the bowler to give RCB their third breakthrough in the ninth over. Tendulkar made 24 and the hosts were 41 for three at the fall of his wicket. Patel followed up Tendulkar’s scalp with Ambati Rayudu’s (22) wicket; he was caught at long-off off a slower delivery in the 14th over.
MI’s situation worsened as Dinesh Karthik, who had walked out to bat at the fall of Sharma’s wicket, was out caught by Virat Kohli when he tried to hit Muttiah Muralitharan out of the park in the 16th over. Karthik, nonetheless, was the top-scorer in the MI innings, having scored 44 runs off 39 deliveries, which included three fours and a six. Muralitharan then had Dwayne Smith (2) caught at point the ball after Karthik’s dismissal to leave MI wobbling at 100 for six in 15.5 overs.
Late cameos by Kieron Pollard (21* off 13) and Harbhajan Singh (20* off 12), however, helped the hosts finish their innings with a flourish and go past the 140-run mark.
RCB had a relatively slow start to their innings as Chris Gayle and Tillakaratne Dilshan managed just 35 runs in the first six overs. MI, perhaps, lost the opportunity to put the visitors under pressure in this period as Dwayne Smith dropped Gayle when the opener looked to smash RP Singh over the ropes in the sixth over. Yet, with Dilshan (19) being trapped lbw by Pragyan Ojha in the ninth over and MI restricting their opponents to just 54 runs in the first 10 overs, the possibility of a close contest was unfolding at the Wankhede Stadium.
It was at this stage that Gayle broke the shackles. The West Indies batsman smote Ojha for three sixes in the 11th over before hitting Kieron Pollard for a couple of fours and a six in the 13th and 15th overs respectively. He brought up his half-century off just 36 deliveries, and with Virat Kohli giving him steady company, RCB got to their required target of 142 in 18 overs. Gayle remained unbeaten on 82, while Virat Kohli, who hit a six to bring up the winning score, remained not out on 36 (off 25 balls).
KXIP revive their playoff hopes with 25-run win over DC
By IPL desk
Mumbai 09 May 2012
Kings XI Punjab beat the Deccan Chargers by 25 runs at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here. In doing so, the Mohali franchise has thrown its hat into the ring for the already intense race to the playoffs.
The depleted DC were playing without their lead bowler, Dale Steyn, who was replaced by Juan Theron. Invited to bat first by Kumar Sangakkara, the David Hussey-led KXIP built a 55-run partnership for the first wicket, before Shikhar Dhawan castled Shaun Marsh for 22. Nitin Saini who replaced him at the crease, followed him back after adding just two runs to the total. The wicketkeeper-batsman was trapped lbw by Ashish Reddy.
Hussey, who then joined Mandeep Singh in the middle, slammed Amit Mishra’s first delivery over long-off for a six. But the KXIP skipper did not last long and was sent packing by Veer Pratap Singh a while later. After hitting the bowler for a boundary off the first ball of the over, Hussey (16 off 16 balls) was caught at long-off by Daniel Harris off the last delivery.
Although wickets were falling at regular intervals at the other end, Mandeep Singh kept ravaging the Chargers bowlers. But the KXIP opener, who has looked in good nick this season, was finally sent back for 75 (48 balls; 8x4, 3x6) thanks to a slower one from Ashish Reddy.
The big-hitting David Miller came out to the middle and joined the experienced Azhar Mahmood in the 16th over. However, Mahmood was run-out in the very next over. Sangakkara employed the services of seven bowlers, but still missed the depth and experience of the injured Steyn. By collecting 32-runs off the last three overs, Miller (28 off 18 balls) and Siddharth Chitnis (6) helped set a 171-run target.
Praveen Kumar then got the visitor’s an early breakthrough with the key wicket of Shikhar Dhawan (8) in the second over. A while later, Parvinder Awana followed up with the wicket of Parthiv Patel (17 off 13 balls), who had hit him for a four and a six earlier in the over.
When Cameron White came out to join Daniel Harris, the KXIP bowlers did not let the pair settle down. Hussey brought himself on and dealt a double blow by claiming the duo. Harris (30 off 29 balls) was the first to depart as he was caught by Awana. Later, White’s (8) attempted big-hit misfired and he was caught at deep midwicket by Marsh. Back into the attack, Praveen Kumar then followed up with the wicket of Sangakkara (4) to leave the home team reeling at 74 for five. Wicketkeeper Nitin Saini took a brilliant catch to dismiss the DC captain.
It was an uphill task from that point forward for the Chargers. In an attempt to rescue the innings, Akshath Reddy (24 off 13 balls) and Abhishek Jhunjhunwala built a 43-run partnership, before the former fell to a quick stumping by Saini off the bowling of Piyush Chawla. A direct hit from Marsh to run out Jhunjhunwala (19 off 20 balls), in the next over, put KXIP firmly in the driver’s seat. Ashish Reddy (8) was the next to depart, caught by Marsh at square-leg off Awana. In the end, DC could only manage 145 for eight in their 20 overs.