Deccan Chargers 177-4 (White 78) beat
Pune Warriors 159-7 (Reddy 2-32) by 18 runs
Indian Premier League 2012, Pune
The Deccan Chargers finally ended their Indian Premier League 2012 run without a win by claiming an 18-run victory over the Pune Warriors.
The onlooking Yuvraj Singh saw his side defeated after Cameron White's 78 inspired Deccan to score 177 for four and Pune were then held to 159 for seven in reply.
Deccan Chargers won the toss and chose to bat first although as Sourav Ganguly claimed he would have bowled first, it rather negated the toss proceedings.
Opening batsmen Shikhar Dhawan (16) and Parthiv Patel (24) then set about negating the effect of Pune's opening bowlers to good effect, racing to 39 without loss in four overs but they were undone by a crazy - and entirely unnecessary, given the previous ball had gone for six - attempt at a single that left Dhawan short of his ground.
Patel followed him back soon after when he lofted Bhuvneshwar Kumar into the hands of Manish Pandey in the deep and Deccan had to regroup.
The experience of Kumar Sangakkara and Cameron White came together and steadied the ship, White hitting a big six and Sangakkara one graceful four before he charged down the wicket to the first ball of Rahul Sharma's third over and was clean bowled for 12.
White showed exquisite timing and placement to lift Marlon Samuels over midwicket for another six as he and Duminy put Pune under more pressure.
White's half-century came up in 35 balls and he reached it by powerfully drilling Alfonso Thomas firmly down the ground for another boundary. He then took on Sharma, hitting him for four and two sixes, one beautifully driven over cover and the next straight down the ground again.
With White in the groove, Kumar's return was greeted with another crushing blow into the stands at long off but he fell soon after for a brilliant 78 in 46 balls - with six fours and five sixes - when he was caught by Thomas off Samuels.
With White gone Deccan's charge was stalled somewhat but JP Duminy closed on 25 not out in 23 balls - with one six - as the Chargers gave themselves every chance at the halfway stage.
Pune then got off to a dreadful start when Jesse Ryder cipped Ankit Sharma straight to substitute fielder Daniel Harris at midwicket for seven.
Pandey looked in good touch, hitting a four and six before chopping Juan Theron onto his stumps having made 21 in 20 balls.
Robin Uthappa wasted no time in taking on the Deccan bowlers, driving Amit Mishra powerfully over long off for an early six as he and Sourav Ganguly looked to carry the innings forward.
Ganguly offered a chance to Duminy when he cut Manpreet Gony but the relatively simple catch went down but two balls later, a far harder chance was brilliantly held by Harris at cover and the crowd favourite was on his way for 23 in 20 balls.
The Warriors innings now slowed to a crawl with Uthappa and Samuels struggling to break free and when Uthappa tried to flick Ashish Reddy (2-27) round the corner, who clipped the ball onto his stumps having made 29 in 27 deliveries.
Samuels followed moments later when he chipped the same bowler straight to Sangakkara at mid off. He had made just three in eight balls in a curious innings and left his side needing more than 12 runs per over to clinch victory.
It was not until the 15th over that they passed triple figures as Steven Smith tried desperately to keep them in the game.
He hammered Manpreet Gony, Reddy and Theron for maximums but Theron hit back to have Smith caught by a sliding Duminy at long on for 26 in 13 balls.
Mithun Manhas then twice smacked Theron (2-37) for six and Alfonso Thomas did the same to Reddy but by now, the game was well and truly Deccan's - despite their propensity this season to squander winning positions.
Deccan needed 26 to win from the final over, bowled by Gony. A dot ball was followed by Thomas (12) runing himself out as he tried to get Manhas, who finished unbeaten on 22 in 14 balls, back on strike before Kumar hit a four over the wicket-keeper.
Another dot ball left Pune requiring miraclesand 20 were needed from the final delivery, which brought just a single for the home side.
© Cricket World 2012