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Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai 06 May 2013 - 12:02am IST

Report : Match 50 – RR vs PWI

Determined Royals defend their fortress

Rajasthan Royals came back to winning ways with a thrilling five-wicket win over Pune Warriors India at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. Batting first, PWI posted a mammoth 178, which RR overhauled on the back of half-centuries by Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Dravid. The hosts chased down the total with a ball to spare.

Chasing 179, Rahul Dravid got RR rolling with two gorgeous shots through covers off Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The RR skipper followed it up with two more boundaries off Kumar in the third over. Ajinkya Rahane joined the party as he smashed Krishnakant Upadhyay for a six and a boundary. RR made the most of the field restrictions as they accumulated 53 from their power play overs. At the halfway stage, RR were 84 for no loss, still needing 95.

Dravid brought up his fifty with a six off Rahul Sharma. Angelo Mathews got PWI their first breakthrough having Dravid (58) caught by Mitchell Marsh at long off. Rahane continued his assault as RR took 21 runs from Mathews in the 14th over. RR suffered a setback of sorts as Wayne Parnell saw the back of the dangerous Shane Watson (5). 

Rahane got to his half-century in style, depositing Mathews for a six over extra cover. Bhuvneshwar Kumar brought his team back into the contest when he had Rahane (67) caught by Sharma in the 16th over. Stuart Binny then hit a boundary and a six off Sharma before Parnell had Brad Hodge (4) caught by Kumar. Sanju Vishwanadh hit consecutive boundaries off Parnell to reduce the equation to 18 from 12 balls. Yuvraj Singh put down a difficult opportunity of Binny (32*) in the 19th over and that opportunity cost PWI the match as Binny launched Kumar for a six and eventually hit the winning hit.

Earlier PWI won the toss and opted to bat. Openers, Robin Uthappa and Aaron Finch started positively with three boundaries off Ajit Chandila in the third over. Uthappa then smashed three boundaries off Watson. Runs continued to flow fast as PWI made 61 from their Power Play overs. Uthappa launched Stuart Binny over the fence in the 8th over.

Kevon Cooper finally got the breakthrough, sending Finch's (45) stump cart-wheeling. Yuvraj Singh who looked in a dangerous mood dispatched Binny for a boundary and a six in the 13th over. Uthappa smashed two boundaries off Siddharth Trivedi but Trivedi came back well to have Yuvraj (15) caught by Cooper. Uthappa's (54) innings came to an end when Vishwanadh ran him out. Marsh deposited Cooper for two maximums in the 19thover. Mathews (18) fell in pursuit of runs off Faulkner. Marsh (35*) hit the final ball for a six as PWI finished at 178 for 4.

Man-of-the-Match: Ajinkya Rahane

Brief Scores: Pune Warriors India 178 for 4 (Robin Uthappa 54, Siddharth Trivedi 1-33) lost to Rajasthan Royals 182 for 5 in 19.5 over (Ajinkya Rahane 67, Wayne Parnell 3-23) by 5 wickets. 

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