Royal Challengers Bangalore 157-8 (de Villiers 64no) beat
Delhi Daredevils 137-7 (Muralitharan 3-25) by 20 runs
Indian Premier League, Bangalore
The Royal Challengers Bangalore beat the Delhi Daredevils by 20 runs in their first match of the Indian Premier League 2012.
It was also their first home game but For Delhi, it was a first loss after victory on the road against Kolkata Knight Riders earlier in the week.
Virender Sehwag won the toss for Delhi and chose to field first. For Bangalore fans, there was some disappointment early on as last year’s sensation Chris Gayle sat out this one. Nevertheless, in his absence Andrew McDonald and Cheteshwar Pujara gave them a flourishing start, making 37 in four overs before the fall of the first wicket.
Both openers were sent back by Morne Morkel with the score on 46. It sparked a mini-collapse for them as Virat Kohli was out for eight and Saurabh Tiwary adjudged LBW for just one, reducing the hosts to 59 for four in the ninth over.
AB de Villiers then played a lone hand as he went about resurrecting the innings even as wickets fell at the other end. It was his 54-run partnership for the eighth wicket with Ranganath Vinay Kumar that brought some respectability to their total.
They were together for just about five overs and did enough damage to gain momentum from Delhi. Vinay Kumar made 18 off 16 balls with one four while de Villiers finished unbeaten on 64, dealing harshly with Irfan Pathan at the end. He faced only 42 balls and smashed six fours and two sixes, hitting some astonishing reverse-batted boundaries.
Doug Bracewell picked up three for 32 and Morkel returned two for 30 in their allotted four overs for Delhi. A total of 157 was an even one for the M Chinnaswamy Stadium and if Sehwag got going, it would have seemed a lot less.
Alas that did not happen, as he was caught first ball off Zaheer Khan. Prior to his dismissal though, Aaron Finch gave them an electric start hitting three boundaries off the first three balls even as Khan was only getting into his groove. With Naman Ojha, he put on 42 runs for the second wicket before spin was deployed by the Royal Challengers.
Muttiah Muralitharan, playing for his third IPL franchise after Kochi Tuskers Kerala and Chennai Super Kings, wreaked havoc finishing with three for 25 in his four overs. He sent back Finch, Ojha and Glenn Maxwell to leave them panting at 76 for four.
Daniel Vettori then brought himself on to strangle the scoring rate and despite a few lusty blows from Irfan Pathan and Yogesh Nagar, Delhi were always going to fall short.
Ojha top scored with 33 off 26 balls with five fours and a six, while Finch made 25 off 24 balls. Pathan was the only other batsman to cross the 20-run mark, making 24 off 15 balls before being run out.
© Cricket World 2012