Wednesday 21 May 2008 

126 Is Enough For Bangalore To Beat Chennai


Bangalore Royal Challengers 126-8 (Dravid 47, Morkel 4-32, Gony 2-11)
Chennai Super Kings 112-8 (Fleming 45, Kumble 3-14, Steyn 2-28)

Bangalore Royal Challengers won by 14 runs
By Graham Wilson

The Bangalore Royal Challengers posted 126 for eight, the lowest total so far in the tournament for a side using its full quota of overs, but still won game 46 of the Indian Premier League against the Chennai Super Kings by 14 runs in Chennai.

Anil Kumble took three for 14 and Dale Steyn two for 28 as the Super Kings, who were 60 for one after ten overs, closed on 112 for eight.

From the off Manpreet Gony (two for 12) showed his talents again as he removed Jacques Kallis (five) and Shreevats Goswami (ten) in quick succession. Interestingly, the young Indian under 19 wicket-keeper was not given out at first, but took it on himself to walk once he had seen that the umpire was not going to give him out.

Virat Kohli fell thanks to a superb catch from Albie Morkel in the deep. Running backwards, Morkel managed to cling on but in the process injured himself and had to have a quick spell off the pitch.

This was not the only bit of superb catching by the Super Kings as wicket keeper Parthiv Patel took a tremendous one handed diving catch to hit right to send the dangerous Misbah ul-Haq back to the dugout for just four.

At the half way stage, staggeringly, the Royal Challengers were on only 59 for two just showing that they really haven�t been able to grasp the best way to play Twenty20 cricket as a team. It took 70 balls for Bangalore�s first fifty to be brought up.

Captain Rahul Dravid top scored with a dogged 47 off 39 balls, but it was not enough as Chennai made easy work of Bangalore�s batting efforts with the ball.

Gony was superb during his four overs, as well as Morkel who returned to take two wickets in two balls as he continued to announce himself as one of the most exciting all-rounders on the world arena and Muttiah Muralitharan (one for 18) chipped in with good spells of bowling.

A late flourish from India�s Praveen Kumar raised his sides hopes as he hit a quickfire 21, which turned out to be a match-turning innings.

Stephen Fleming (45) and Parthiv Patel (24) added an unflustered 61 for the opening wicket before Patel's drive off of Kumble bounced off of the bowler and the non-striker with Kumble pouching it at the third attempt.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni (four) was the first of a string of batsmen to hole out before Fleming, bowled off a no-ball, then lofted Kumble into the hands of Balachandra Akhil. The Super Kings still had wickets in hand, but were up against a fiercely-competing Royal Challengers outfit.

Jacques Kallis pulled off a flying catch to dismiss Sivaramakrishnan Vidyut, leaving the Super Kings 18 to win from two overs with Suresh Raina the last recognised batsman at the crease.

Dale Steyn, who had earlier taken the wickets of Albie Morkel (one) and Vidyut (nought) in the same over, conceded just two from the penultimate over which included the run out of Lakshmipathy Balaji and left Raina and Makhaya Ntini 16 to win from six balls.

Praveen Kumar was entrusted with the ball and Raina twice refused singles but was unable to get the boundary to keep his side in the hunt. He took a single from the third delivery leaving Ntini to flounder thrice against excellent death bowling as the Royal Challengers picked up a wholly unexpected win.

Dhoni was honest enough afterwards to admit that his side had been too complacent, adding, "I think most of the guys shot selection was not good, including myself. I think we have to think about the shot selection of the batsmen the bowlers did the job for us, restricting them to 127 odd runs the wicket got slower and slower but still I think it was the shot selection that really made the difference."

Dravid, meanwhile, was delighted to have broken a run of defeats. "It is a relief," he said. "We have been fighting hard and working really hard. I don't think we played our A game today, the batting especially I don't think we were anywhere near good enough, but the boys really fought hard in the bowling department we just kept plugging away."

Man of the match Kumble added, "It was important that we won a match, we have had some pretty close games and some bad ones as well so it was important that we got back on track."

� Cricket World 2008

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