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Last-ball six helps Super Kings stun Knight Riders at Eden Gardens
By IPL desk
Mumbai 15 May 2012
In yet another IPL 2012 game that went down to the wire, Dwayne Bravo clinched a win for the Chennai Super Kings by sending the ball soaring over the fence off the last ball at the Eden Gardens. After beating the Kolkata Knight Ridersby five wickets CSK have strengthened their chances of making it into playoffs.
After a 99-run opening stand between Gautam Gambhir (62) and Brendon McCullum, the hosts lost wickets in quick succession once the latter got out. McCullum (37) was run out while attempting a second run. With this wicket, the Super Kings got their foot in the door and then wedged it open. A run later, the KKR skipper was castled by Shadab Jakati. In his next over, the left-arm spinner claimed the key wicket of Jacques Kallis (4).
KKR then continued to lose wickets at regular intervals. The big-hitting Yusuf Pathan (11), who has yet to big score this season, was caught at long on by Dwayne Bravo while attempting to clear the fence off R Ashwin. In the following over, Manoj Tiwary (12) also hit Ravindra Jadeja straight to Bravo at long-on. From 99 for no loss, KKR were reduced to 128 for five.
Debabrata Das, who had replaced Pathan at the crease, remained unbeaten on 19 and added 28 runs for the fifth wicket with LR Shulka (9), until the latter was sent back by Ben Hilfenhaus in the last over. KKR ended up with 158 for six in their 20 overs.
Defending a modest total, the Knight Riders needed early wickets, but Michael Hussey (56) and Murali Vijay (36) put together a 97-run opening stand. After being brought into the attack, Sunil Narine gave KKR a much-needed breakthrough in the tenth over. The off-spinner claimed both the openers in his second over. Southpaw Suresh Raina, who replaced Hussey, was by joined by the in-form Faf du Plessis at the crease. The duo looked to build on the momentum that the openers had built, but Raina (8) was run out trying to sneak a run.
This brought in CSK skipper MS Dhoni, who is known for his ability to finish games. However, after adding 13 runs to the chase, du Plessis was sent back by Tiwary. With 31 required off 17, Bravo then joined Dhoni in the middle. The CSK skipper however decided to take matters in his own hands and slammed Marchant de Lange for two fours and a six in the penultimate over.
With 18 runs coming off the 19th over, CSK required nine off the last one. Rajat Bhatia, came in to bowl as the match headed to a tight finish. The experienced all-rounder gave a single off the first ball and then, dismantled Dhoni’s woodwork. Ravindra Jadeja (3*) then scampered for two runs and took a single off the next delivery. He then followed it up with a dot ball to Bravo (11*). With five required off the last ball, the West Indian hit a six to seal the game. Scorecard: Man-of-the-Match:Michael Hussey for his crucial 39-ball 56 at the top of the CSK innings
Rayudu-Pollard show stuns RCB at M Chinnaswamy Stadium
By IPL desk
Mumbai 14 May 2012
The Mumbai Indians battled rain, a malfunctioning light tower and the ever-probing Royal Challengers Bangalore to emerge victorious at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. Ambati Rayudu (81*) and Kieron Pollard (52*) completed a stellar comeback for MI to register a five-wicket win. As a result of this victory, the Mumbai franchise now has 18 points from 14 games, and is placed second in league standings at the moment.
MI needed 172 for the win, but RCB came out in the second half with renewed enthusiasm and purpose. Sachin Tendulkar was the first to go without troubling the scorers after he smashed one straight to Virat Kohli off Zaheer Khan. Herschelle Gibbs (2) was looking good, but decided to go for a third run too late and only managed to get himself run-out. At two wickets down with just four runs on the board, MI needed to settle down. In Rohit Sharma (5) they had an in-form class player, but Vinay Kumar ensured he wouldn’t make a telling impact on this match after collecting a simple return catch in the 4th over.
Dinesh Karthik stroked three boundaries and seemed destined for more, but Muttiah Muralitharan had other ideas. The wily spinner dismissed the MI wicketkeeper-batsman in his very first over to reduce the away side to 44 for four. The Royal Challengers were on top, and it only got better for them after Harshal Patel dismissed the dangerous Dwayne Smith (6).
However, Ambati Rayudu (81*) and Kieron Pollard breathed life into the MI chase with their aggressive intent. The duo’s battling display took the game to the last over. With 14 required off the last six deliveries, Pollard (52*) powered MI home with two balls to spare, giving MI a brilliant five-wicket win.
Earlier, on a gloomy evening in Bengaluru, Harbhajan Singh won the toss and decided to field first. After a rain delay, MI drew first blood in the form of Chris Gayle’s (6) wicket. The in-form Jamaican edged a Munaf Patel delivery on to his stumps to give the away side the early advantage. RCB needed Virat Kohli (3) to fire, but the skipper was run out after some brilliant work in the field from Herschelle Gibbs. At 11 for two, RCB were under immense pressure to get some runs on the board. But there was no respite as Saurabh Tiwary (21) went too deep into his crease and somehow managed to hit the stumps with his back leg. With the top order in tatters, AB de Villiers (14) was the key to RCB’s fortunes. But Kieron Pollard accounted for the dangerous Protea after he drove uppishly into the hands of Lasith Malinga.
It just wasn’t going to plan for the home side, but with Tillakaratne Dilshan still at the crease, they were not out of it just yet. The Sri Lankan, along with Mayank Agarwal (64), brought some sanity to proceedings with their 46-run partnership. However, RP Singh came back into the attack and broke the threatening partnership by knocking over Dilshan’s (47) stumps. At 133 for five with just 15 balls remaining, RCB were stuttering to a modest total. But Agarwal’s big-hitting at the end ensured that RCB ended up with a commanding 171 for six in 20 overs.
Scorecard Man-of-the-match: Ambati Rayudu for his match-winning 54-ball 81* that included six fours and four sixes