Hodge shines as Tuskers shoot out Royals for 97

Published: Sunday, May 15, 2011, 21:32 [IST]
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Hodge shines as Royals shot out for 97

In the face of some tight bowling, the Rajasthan Royals began their innings in circumspect fashion. The experiment of using Faiz Fazal to open the innings with Dravid seemed likely to pay off as the batsman struck 2 powerful boundaries off R P Singh in the 3rd over. But he was out in the same over for 16 off 15 balls.

Then in the first delivery off the next over, an outswinger from Sreesanth had Rahul Dravid caught behind for 1 off 4 balls. But the sldie didn't stop there. A couple of overs later, Ajinkya Rahane was lbw by Sreesanth, for 8 off 9 balls as the score read 26/3 in 5.2 overs. Then Ashok Menaria got off the mark by carting the bowler for a six.

Menaria and Watson settled into a remedial stand with the former hitting Prashanth Paraweswaran to the boundary before Watson carted Padmanabhan Prashanth for three maximums in the 8th over. The second hit over the boundary brought up the RR's 50. But just one over later, Parameswaran bowled Watson for 20 off 13 balls as the score read 63/4 in 9 overs.

Brad Hodge soon effected a triple strike, removing P R Shah for 5 off 5 balls and two overs later, bowling Jacob Oram for a first-ball duck. But Hodge was not through with his destructive spell. He next cleaned up Shane Warne for 2 off 9 balls as the Royals sunk to 81/7 in 13.1 overs. Hodge ws instrumental in bringing about another wicket, when he ran out Ankeet Chavan for 1 off 3 balls as the Royals slid to 82/8 in 14 overs.

Hodge was evidently on-song as he even removed Menaria for 31 off 28 balls, finishing with figures of 4/13 in 4 overs. The Rajasthan Royals were 90/9 in 16 overs at that point. A couple of quiet overs followed before Shaun Tait struck Parameswaran for a boundary. Then after Hodge spilled a catch from last batsman Doshi, captain Mahela Jayawardene took a dolly at midwiket to dismiss the same batsman. The Royals had been bowled out fo 97 runs in 18.3 overs.

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