Pune Warriors Make It Two IPL Wins Out Of Two
Pune Warriors 151-6 (Mishra 37no) beat
Kochi Tuskers Kerala 148-8 (Jadeja 47) by 4 wickets
Indian Premier League 2011, Mumbai
Some inspired late hitting from Mohnish Mishra put the finishing touches to Pune Warriors' four-wicket win over fellow IPL 2011 debutants Kochi Tuskers Kerala in Mumbai.
Mishra's calculated assault on the penultimate over, bowled by Sri Lankan veteran Muttiah Muralitharan, saw him finish unbeaten on 37 in 21 balls and his side close on 151 for six in reply to Kerala's 148 for eight.
After Rahul Sharma had smacked Ravi Jadeja for a six at the end of the 18th over, the Warriors needed 14 to win in 12 balls. Mishra needed just five, targetting the midwicket and long-on fences to hit a four and then two sweetly-timed sixes to hand Pune their second straight victory in the tournament.
They had looked in control in the early stages of their run chase with Jesse Ryder (17) and Graeme Smith (24) making useful contributions and even the cheap dismissals of Mithun Manhas for 12 and captain Yuvraj Singh for eight hardly held them back due to the form of Robin Uthappa and Mishra.
Uthappa hit three fours and two sixes, racing to 31 in 12 balls but his ill-judged reverse sweep saw his stumps broken by Muralitharan and the game hanging in the balance.
Wayne Parnell's run out having made just one brought Sharma and Mishra together and they forged a match-winning stand of 33, coolly seeing their side home in the face of some excellent bowling from Jadeja (1-28) and Ranganath Vinay Kumar (1-15).
Muralitharan went for 42 in 3.5 overs and he was upstaged with the ball by Brad Hodge, who returned two for 14 by dismissing Manhas and Yuvraj but his effotrs were to be in vain.
Earlier, Kochi lost their all-star opening partnership of Brendon McCullum and VVS Laxman before either man could score a run and then Mahela Jayawardene for two to slump to 13 for three and then 24 for four when Parthiv Patel went for 21.
Hodge needed his wealth of experience to resuscitate the innings with a vital 39 in 36 balls, Jadeja continued the rehabilitation of his career with 47 in 33 balls before Raiphi Gomez put his nightmare first game behind him with an unbeaten 26 in 18 deliveries at the end.
Parnell could be forgiven his run out later in the day for he had done his main job brilliantly, returning three for 35 with the scalps of Laxman, Patel and Jayawardene while there was a wicket apiece for Alfonso Thomas, Sharma and Ryder.
© Cricket World 2011