B~~lore Challengers stave off Hyd Deccan~~s charge

Published: Saturday, May 3, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
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Hyderabad Chargers' batsman Rohit Sharma played a classy innings in the losing causeBangalore: Steely Kumble held his nerves to help Bangalore Royal Challengers steal a last ball thriller against Hyderabad Deccan Chargers in their IPL league encounter at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Saturday.

Hyderabad outfit chasing 157-run target was found short of the victory mark by three runs despite the spirited effort from Rohit (57 off 42) and VVS Laxman (52 off 44).


It was shame that the sublime innings of Rohit and Laxman ended in losing cause.

The visitors needing 20 runs in the final over with Bangar (not known for big hitting) and young Arjun Yadav at the crease and seasoned Kumble getting ready to ball it was anybody's guess. But never-say-die Bangar (17 off 7) had other plans.

He drove and pulled Kumble out of the park in the third and fourth ball. Now the equation for Hyderabad read: six more runs in two balls. Undetered Kumble bowled two unplayable yorker length balls as Hyd was eventually restricted to 153/6

Rohit, who wrested the Orange Cap for highest rungetter from Gambhir, along with VVS forged a fine 97-run stand. The duo amassed runs playing authentic cricketing shots. Hyd was crusing along well at 125/2 in 16th over when the artists were at the crease.

Sharma hit five boundaries and three sixes and had a particular liking for Kallis hitting him for two sixes in an over. The stylish right-hand batsman conceded his wicket to Kallis caught Jaffer trying one too many. And this proved costly for Hyderabad in the end.

Bangalore seamers Praveen (3/23), Zaheer (2/24) and Steyn bowled exceptionally well in the final overs to wrest the game from Hyd.

Steyn played a crucial role in his side's victory. The fiery South African though went wicketless but conceded too little besides holding onto a stunner at long-off to dismiss the dangerous Afridi early.

Praveen and Zaheer combined spoiled set batsman Laxman's rhythm plucking the vital scalps of Afridi and Styris cheaply to mount pressure on the visitors.

Earlier Chargers' bowlers bowled extremely well in the middle overs to contain Bangalore Royal Challenger to 156/8.

The local outfit was comfortably placed at 85/1 half-way thro' their innings with Jaffer (44 off 37) and Virat Kohli (38 off 29) making merry on a strip taylor-made for stroke-makers before Ojha started the rot dismissing Jaffer.

From then on it was the Hyd bowlers who called the shots.

The late slurry from Dravid (26) and Boucher (16) helped Bangalore post a respectable total.

Left-arm seamer RP Singh was the pick of Hyd bowlers with 3 for 41 while left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha plucked two wickets for measly 28 off four overs.

Challengers put in to bat got off to a fine start despite losing Bharat Chipli in the second over of the innings. RP's inswinger defeated Chipli and crashed into the stumps.

The young Virat Kohli joined Jaffer in the middle and the pair forged a brisk 72-run stand in less than nine overs. Jaffer silanced his bashers with a blazing knock that was crafted with proper cricketing shots. He pulled, drove and flicked for six boundaries in his 37-ball knock.

On the other hand Kohli took to the ariel route belting two sixes including the one over long-off off Ojha that sailed over the second tier of the huge stadia.

However the Hyd slow bowlers hit back to remove Kallis and Misbah cheaply as Bangalore was reduced to 111/5 in the 15th over before Dravid and Boucher took the attack to the opposition.

Going into the match both the teams made three changes in their line-up fielded in the previous ties. Misbah, Chipli and Kumble was drafted into Bangalore squad while Hyderabad recalled Arjun Yadav, Styris and Vijaykumar.


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