IPL 2013: Outstanding Kohli Too Good For Sunrisers
Royal Challengers Bangalore 162-3 (Kohli 93no) beat
Sunrisers Hyderabad 161-6 by seven wickets
Indian Premier League 2013, Bangalore
Report by John Pennington
Virat Kohli blasted a new career-best of 93 not out to drive Royal Challengers Bangalore to a convincing seven-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in front of their home crowd.
Sunrisers, through Cameron White and Thisara Perera, had reached a good total of 161 for six but with Kohli in sparkling form, Bangalore got home with 14 balls to spare.
Both sides kicked on in the closing stages of their innings but the difference was that Bangalore had made the better start despite losing Chris Gayle for 13.
RP Singh had earlier taken three for 27 to limit the Sunrisers but their progress had been steady as the top three of Aksath Reddy (12), Parthiv Patel (20) and Kumar Sangakkara (24) were unable to take full advantage of the early fielding restrictions as Singh, Muttiah Muralitharan and Murali Kartik reduced them to 62 for three.
White then muscled his way to 52 in 34 balls with three fours and three sixes and found a willing ally in Perera, whose 40 came from 24 deliveries and included four maximums. Singh struck again to take the wickets of Perera and Ashish Reddy (3)
Nevertheless, Sunrisers had smashed their way from 116 for three with four overs to go to 161 and a score that looked defendable, provided they didn't let Gayle, Kohli or AB de Villiers get away.
Gayle was caught behind off Ishant Sharma and at the other end, Mayank Agarwal showed class in his knock of 29 in 20 balls to give Bangalore exactly the sort of start they needed.
It gave Kohli, who was joined by de Villiers when Gayle fell, the platform to come in and take complete control, which he did in majestic style. Equally capable of powering shots over fielders or guiding them through the gaps, he dominated the partnership with de Villiers, taking the score to 96 for four when the latter fell for 15.
Immediately after the strategy break, he launched into Amit Mishra with two straight sixes off as many balls, and he simply continued in the same vein, finishing unbeaten on 93 in just 47 balls with 11 fours and four sixes.
His wonderful innings - a fine exhibition of a captain leading by example - helped Bangalore end the unbeaten start to the competition hitherto enjoyed by the Sunrisers.
© Cricket World 2013
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