Ishant Sharma, the India discard who until a few days ago was the butt of all jokes for his growing hair but fading fire-power ran through the Kochi batting order like a rampaging bull-dozer. He summoned all his prowess to display his talent which had led experts to earmark him as one future superstar, and in a three-over first spell got rid of Jayawardene, Parthiv Patel, R V Gomez, Brad Hodge and Kedar Jadhav giving away only 12 runs in the bargain.
Such was visciousness of his attack that even Dale Steyn paled in comparision. During the same spell, Steyn who shared the new-ball along with them gave 16 runs for the wicket of Brendon McCullum.
However after that Ravindra Jadeja led the Tusker's fightback in the company of Thishara Perera. Both the youngsters combined some aggressive stroke-play with smart tactics to see off any further damage. Thushara was the first to go when he mistimed a pull of Manpreet Gony and ended up straight in the palms of Cameron White
Earlier, Mahela Jayawardene won the toss and elected to field first. The new-ball pair of R P Singh and S Sreesanth kept a tight leash on the Chargers batsmen and never allowed them to get off to a flier.
The chargers opener failed once again and so did their lower middle order. Had it not been for the mid-innings consolidation by skipper Sangakkara and Cameron White, there was every chance that the Chargers would have been skittled out for a much lesser score. Sangakkara played a typically gutsy innings of 65 from 47 balls while White did well to stave off his prolonged dip in form and compiled a well-fought 31 run innings of 34 balls.
For Tuskers, R Vinay Kumar was the pick of the bowler. He bowled an impressive spell to claim three wickets for only 25 runs.