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Windies warm to brash T20 style

Hands thrust deep in pockets and cursing their bosses through chattering teeth for agreeing to a Test series in chilly England, the World Twenty20 can't have come quick enough for the West Indies.

When WI captain Chris Gayle, who thrives on packed houses and warm weather cricket, surveyed the rows and rows of empty seats at Chester-Le-Street as his team suffered a second Test drubbing, his thoughts would have drifted back to the IPL.

Had not the West Indies Cricket Board stepped in to fill the Test gap left by Zimbabwe and then Sri Lanka, Gayle as well as other teammates would have been raking in serious cash in the IPL in South Africa.

The Skipper made it clear which aspect of the game he preferred when he arrived in England two days before the first Test having played for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the opening part of the IPL extravganza.

"Everyone knew this would happen," he said. "Maybe there should be a window for the IPL when all players should be available so everybody can get the chance to play against the best, like the World Cup."

The West Indian players, or at least some of them, are regularly at loggerheads with the WICB over financial rewards, although many have already reaped the benefits of Twenty20.

They came out on top in the unlamented Stanford Super Series last year when players became instant millionaires.

Their record on the international front has mirrored their unpredictable talents.

At the 2007 World Twenty20, Gayle smashed 117 in the game against hosts South Africa, and shared a record opening stand of 145 with Devon Smith, but still they lost.

They were then humiliated by Bangladesh by six wickets and failed to reached the Super Eights second round.

In all, the West Indies have won four of their 11 T20 internationals and will face a tough task to make the Super Eights in the 2009 event having been placed in Group D with Australia and Sri Lanka.

Their 15-man squad saw big-hitting Xavier Marshall recalled but Devon Smith misses out.

There are plenty of potential big run-makers in the West Indies line-up.

However, it's their ability of their wayward bowlers to keep a tight leash on opposing batsmen which will concern coach John Dyson.

In the second Test against England, the Caribbean side conceded 61 extras, 28 of them no-balls with frontline Fast bowler Fidel Edwards the worst culprit with 22 no-balls.


Andrew Flintoff ruled out of World Twenty20


England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff was ruled out of the World Twenty20 competition which gets happening on June 5.

The 31-year-old - who had constant injury problems over the past few years - has failed to make progress in time from right knee surgery after he suffered the injury during the Indian Premier League series 2009 in South Africa.

Nick Peirce, the England and Wales Cricket Board medical officer, required to allay fears this could cast doubt on Flintoff taking part in the upcoming Ashes series 2009 where England will be seeking to recover them after the humiliating 5-0 whitewash in 2006/07 when Flintoff captained the side.

"Andrew Flintoff is making brilliant progress and there is no swelling or pain now in the knee," said Peirce of the all rounder, who was England's star player when they won the Ashes in 2005 which was the last time he scored a century for the England side.

"He has been putting in some tremendously hard training with Lancashire and should start running and practicing this week.

"We have obtained permission from ICC to name Adil Rashid as a replacement," said Miller, a former England spinner.


Deccan chargers are 2009 DLF IPL champions

For once, Ravi Shastri was entitled to bellow his lungs out on the mic and invite the world and its uncle to party, because this was an occasion that was worthy of some over-the-top hype. The finals couldn't have featured teams better suited to headline writers if it had been scripted - after all, these were the sides that were locked in a 'least-worst' contest last year. But in a true testament to the nature of T20 cricket, where the form of the day is what counts, they had risen to the summit of this year's contest.

It started off on expected lines - Anil Kumble won the toss and opted to bowl, Adam Gilchrist said he wasn't sure what he would have done on winning the toss.

With Kumble opening the bowling in recent matches, one of the most eagerly awaited battle-within-battles of the finals happened in the first over itself, when Gilchrist faced up to his opposite number. However, it was not a classic by any means - it was a hands down triumph for Kumble who bowled Gilchrist off the third ball of the match, giving his team a huge early advantage. Mindful of Gilchrist's penchant for swatting faster bowlers like so many flies, Kumble cleverly slowed down the pace of the ball, to lure him out and fool him with the wrong 'un.

Much like in the semi-finals, Kumble brought himself on for only one over inside the power-play. In the previous match, his target had been to get Hayden, this time it was Gilchrist. He failed then, but was right on the money today.

Hyderabad suffered another jolt when Suman was out to Vinay Kumar - the leading edge going in the direction of the covers, where Manish Pandey took a well judged catch despite the fact that 2 other fielders were running in, and no one called for it.

To have a reasonable chance at a match-winning total, Hyderabad needed Symonds and Gibbs to combine well. They did get a partnership going but were fortunate. Had Rahul Dravid - the world record holder for catches in Test cricket - not fluffed a sitter off Andrew Symonds. The unfortunate bowler was Vinay Kumar, and Symonds was then on 5 from 6 balls, and Hyderabad were 23 for 2 in 5.2 overs.

Hyderabad then had another slice of luck, when Gibbs edged a ball between the wicket-keeper and Dravid who was at a widish first slip off Kallis.

With Symonds opening his shoulders and looking dangerous, Anil Kumble went to his go-to bowler for tight situations - i.e. himself. The change worked, as Kumble got Symonds bowled, the ball looping off the batsman's thigh pad and onto the bails, and after a brief recovery Hyderabad were once again on the backfoot, heading into the strategy break at 62 for 3.

The Bangalore bowlers maintained the pressure, and it was a matter of time before something happened. Either Gibbs and Rohit Sharma would be successful in breaking the shackles, or would perish in trying to do so. Hyderabad had endured a 36 ball dry spell, boundary wise, but the batsmen finally found their timing and placement with a flurry of boundaries, and Praveen Kumar's third over went for 20 runs, both batsmen hitting him for sixes. The fifty partnership was raised in 41 balls, and both batsmen looked set to explode.

However, the finals had a set script to follow - everytime a batsman or partnership looked threatening, Kumble would bring himself on and get a wicket. That is exactly what he did in his fourth over - the 17th of the innings - by foxing Rohit Sharma who holed out to long off for 24 off 23 balls. Kumble wasn't done though, and off his final ball, scalped Venugopal Rao as well to leave Hyderabad 115 for 5 after 17 overs. Kumble returned with absolutely outstanding figures of 4-0-16-4, and appropriately enough, the last ball he bowled in the tournament got him a wicket.

The other bowlers followed Kumble's lead and Hyderabad were not able to get in a single big over at the end of their innings, and ended up with a slightly below-par total of 143 for 6. Herschelle Gibbs had carried his bat through the innings for 53 not out off 48 balls.

Bangalore, who towards the end of the tournament had discovered a realiable opening pair, started cautiously, with both Kallis and Pandey playing carefully at the start. They had wanted to build a good base, but purple cap holder RP Singh put paid to those plans when Kallis dragged a ball back, to send his leg-stump cartwheeling in the fourth over.

Bangalore's young success story, then fell to Hyderabad's young success story, when Pragyan Ojha got Manish Pandey off the first ball he bowled, edging the ball into Gilchrist's gloves. Ojha got further success when he outfoxed van der Merwe to get him stumped after a cameo innings of 32 off 21 balls. Then Harmeet Singh, who had an economy rate of almost 9 before this match, uprooted Dravid's leg stump when the latter tried to be too cute and moved too far across his stumps. At 79 for 4 in 11.4 overs, the match hung nicely in the balance. The side that won the next passage of play would be the one most likely to get their hands on the trophy.

In a pressure match, while chasing a decent total, the pressure got to Bangalore and from 99 for 4 in 14.1 overs, they slid to 110 for 8 in 16.4 overs, losing two big wickets in two balls to Andrew Symonds. First Ross Taylor pulled a ball straight down the throat of deep square leg, then Virat Kohli dragged his foot out of the crease to be excellently stumped by Gilchrist.

After that the writing was on the wall for Bangalore, and though Robin Uthappa managed to strike a six, he had been left with too tall a mountain to climb for a man who had been so out of form in the tournament. The Royal Challengers still made a spirited attempt, but fell short of the target by one DLF Maximum to end on 137 for 9.

It was thus Adam Gilchrist who lifted the silverware this time, ending season two of the IPL on a nicely symmetrical note - The last team last year was No.1 this year, while the the second last team came out second. A legendary, retired Australian cricketer beat a future India captain the last time, while a legendary, retired Australian cricketer beat an ex-India captain this time.

Full marks to Adam Gilchrist - he deserved every bit of the glory that came his way, though one couldn't help but feel for Anil Kumble who was at least as deserving of glory as Gilchrist, but unfortunately had to finish second.

Chennai Super Kings put Kings XI Punjab on the brink of elimination


After witnessing the ouster of the 2008 IPL champions in the hands of Kolkata, Kingsmead was ready to host another do-or-die encounter for Punjab against the Chennai Superkings. MS Dhoni won the toss for Chennai and opted to bat first. While Punjab had no changes in their eleven, Chennai replaced Jakati, Tyagi and Albie Morkel with Ashwin, Gony and Thushara.

With Hayden sitting out due to his injury, it was once again Parthiv Patel and George Bailey to open the proceedings for Chennai. While the pair were circumspect against Brett Lee, they took their chances against the likes of Irfan Pathan and Powar, taking Chennai to a steady start. Punjab turned the tables on Chennai by getting the top order in quick succession. Bailey was the first to depart when a throw from Yuvraj found the batsman short of the crease. His opening partner Parthiv Patel was the next man to go, bowled by Ramesh Powar after scoring 32 off 23 balls.

Kingsmead witnessed top order collapses earlier in the day with the batsmen failing to score for both Rajasthan and Punjab. The trend seemed to continue into the second match when Badrinath and MS Dhoni got out in quick succession, with a rejuvenated Sreesanth getting the better of the batsmen. In what could be termed as the ball of the tournament, Sreesanth emulating Waqar Younis, bowled a steaming yorker, castling the stumps of MS Dhoni. He went on to finish his spell with figures of 2/23.

Another wicket could have gone down for Chennai, but for a decision from the third umpire. Jacob Oram attempted a quick single and was found short of the crease. Luckily for him, the third umpire ruled the decision in his favour after replays suggested that Powar might have lost the ball during his attempt to break the stumps. When a furious Preity Zinta was fuming over the run-out decision going against Punjab, two more wickets went down for Chennai, bringing the smile back on the Punjab team owner's face. Mota and Chawla were the contributors for the smile, getting the wickets of Raina and Gony respectively. Punjab had more reasons to celebrate when Jacob Oram and Ashwin got out to Irfan Pathan in the 18th over, trying to go for quick runs.

The jinx of Chennai not having won a single match at Durban seemed to have hit them again when the batting failure saw Chennai end up with a score of 116/9 at the end of 20 overs.

Punjab started off the chase steadily, not wanting to give early wickets. However, MS Dhoni and co had other ideas, wanting to give Punjab a run for the money. They got a wicket early in the innings when Thushara dismissed Sohal. Not wanting to give away any freebies, Dhoni had his bowlers maintain a tight line. He employed Muralitharan early in the innings to make things tough for Punjab. His strategy paid off when the Sri Lankan Maestro got the key wickets of Simon Katich and Pomersbach and ended up with miserly figures of 2/8 off his 4 overs.

While Punjab thought that Yuvraj and Sangakkara would get the team out of trouble, they were proved wrong by Chennai. After the strangulation of runs, Chennai ran into the middle order of the Kings XI team. Raina was the first to break into the middle order dismissing Yuvraj Singh in the 13th over. Punjab's hopes rested on Sangakkara to pull off something special. But that was not to be as the Sri Lankan keeper was dismissed by Ashwin, who went on to take the wicket of Mota in the same over. The off spinning trio of Muralitharan, Ashwin and Raina caused enough damage from which the Punjab team could not recover.

They gave away just 38 runs off their combined 12 overs, most importantly picking up 6 wickets during that time. This eventually led to the Punjab team, losing the match by 24 runs.


Kolkata Knight Riders send Rajasthan crashing out


Some years ago, Laxmi Ratan Shukla surfaced as the lead player in India's search for an all-rounder. He disappeared into the huge expanses of domestic cricket after playing three one-day internationals. On Wednesday, we finally got to see a good all-round show from him as Kolkata Knight Riders scampered to a four-wicket win that sank defending champions Rajasthan Royals out of the Indian Premier League 2009.

With a hives of wickets falling around him as Kolkata Knight Riders chased just 102 for victory, Shukla stayed calm and collected as he made an unbeaten 48 (46 balls, three fours, two sixes) and shared a match-winning stand of 57 runs in eight overs with Ajit Agarkar (13 off 17) to steer the team home with three balls to spare.

Walking in at 37 for five in the 10th over, Shukla stood tall against every trick that Rajasthan Royals Skipper Shane Warne and the situation threw at him. Not for a moment did he seem under pressure and he came up with conventional and creative shots, taking a few risks along the way. Above all, it was a smart approach that smacked of a never-say-die spirit.

To give Warne due cricket, the Rajasthan Royals Skipper was aware that his team had made a sub-par score against steady bowling and electric fielding and made a clarion call to the fielders before they started their defence. And his squad responded magnificently in their bid to stay afloat in the race for the semifinals

Munaf Patel claimed two wickets up front while Amit Singh saw the back of the dangerous Brendon McCullum and panic seemed to strike Kolkata Knight Riders ranks. The scoring slowed down and it needed the calm and mature approach shown by Shukla and Agarkar for the team to be able to head home in slightly better frame of mind after a dismal tournament.

Earlier, Naman Ojha made 21 runs in the first over of the match against Brad Hodge but Rajasthan Royals were caught in a web of confusion, unable to make up their mind whether to seek a simple win that would still keep them in the race or for a big win that would make a huge impact to their net run rate.

Poor shot-selection and run out dismissals afflicted Rajasthan Royals through their innings and they were unable to make a score that could challenge Kolkata Knight Riders any more that it did in the end. On a day when their batsmen needed to fire big time, Rajasthan Royals had little to show for their determination.

Kolkata Knight Riders were indebted to South African paceman Charl Langeveldt who claimed three for 15 in his four overs on appearance in IPL 2009. Shukla was delightfully parsimonious in his four overs when he kept firing yorkers almost at will.

Bangalore Royal Challengers keep semis hope alive


While Bangalore Royal Challengers went into the match in a must-win situation for the team to stay in the semis track, Delhi were a relaxed outfit having already qualified for the semis. Virender Sehwag won the toss and elected bat first.

While Skipper Sehwag was looking for a good outing at the Wanderers after his rash of failures, Bangalore Royal Challengers hoped for early wickets to put pressure on Delhi straight away. Bangalore's wishes were granted when Praveen Kumar, bowling the first over of the match, got the wickets of Sehwag and Manhas. A legside delivery from Praveen Kumar had Sehwag flicking the ball straight to the hands of Ross Taylor. Mithun Manhas, who came in at number three, attempted a pull off Praveen Kumar. However he played the shot too early and holed out to a diving Kallis at the 2nd slip. Gautham Gambhir and de Villiers got together and played good criket, getting Delhi out of the gap. However the prospective pair was nipped by Bangalore Royal Challengers when Gambhir was dismissed by Kallis. It was once again left to de Villiers to help Delhi to a good score with Dinesh Karthik partnering him.

Bangalore got a critical break on the other side of the strategy break when van De Merwe dismissed his South African team-mate de Villers. Delhi drooping further with the old war horse Anil Kumble castling McDonald's stumps. The spell of wickets put a break on the run-rate. Dinesh Karthik and Nagar played for singles and twos trying to get Delhi to a reputable score. Bangalore kept the pair on a leash, not giving away the boundaries. Eventually, Karthik and Nagar were dismissed. Mahroof got some quick runs towards the end helping Delhi reach a score of 134/7 at the end of over.

Delhi started off well with the ball with Nehra getting the wicket of Robin Uthappa in the first over. Uthappa's incapability to come up with a contribution continued to anguish Bangalore Royal Challengers through the tournament. Rahul Dravid joined Kallis at number three and the experienced pair took a cautious approach, ensuring that Bangalore did not lose further wickets. The duo played diligently, going about the chase in a judicious manner and brought up the fifty partnership. They looked good to take Bangalore to the target until Dravid was out to Nagar in the 13th over. A soft dismissal resulted in Dravid heading back to the dug-out after scoring 38 runs.

Kallis held his end and continued the well work for Bangalore Royal Challengers. Taylor gave him well company as they took the team closer to the target. Taylor played some good shots until he got out to Nagar. Meanwhile, Kallis played crucial role in keeping Bangalore's semi-final hopes alive and went on to bring up a well made fifty in the process. Boucher provided him the perfect support as they kept the run-rate on par with Delhi, eventually winning the match by 7 wickets with one over to spare. Kallis remained unbeaten on 58 off 56 balls and his sturdy innings earned him the man-of-the-match.

Man of the match: Kallis

Kolkata's Knight Riders won the match!!!

The Chennai skipper MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to bat first. Chennai had a set-back with the tournament highest scorer Matthew Hayden ruled out due to an injury. Meanwhile KKR had four changes - the expensive Mortaza, Shoaib Shaikh, Yashpal Singh and Ishant Sharma went out while Ajantha Mendis, Ashok Dinda, Laxmi Ratan Shukla and Anureet Singh came in.

Suresh RainaIn the nonappearance of Matthew Hayden, George Bailey joined Parthiv Patel at the opening. The pair took Chennai off to a quick start, not letting the Kolkata bowlers to settle down. They took advantage of the powerplay, scoring at a run-rate of 9 per over, while KKR continued with their sorry effort in the fielding sector. The Knight Riders finally got the break when a pointed throw from Shukla found Parthiv Patel short of the crease, bringing the 59 run partnership to an end. Things slowed down for Chennai after Parthiv's dismissal. Kolkata hooked things back with the spinners bowled in racing bike. The pressure resulted in one more wicket when George Bailey was run-out thanks to one more direct hit by Shukla.

Raina and Dhoni got together and took over the duty of taking Chennai to a good total. Singles and twos along with usual boundaries was the feature of their partnership. Kolkata's fielding got from bad to worse when Murali Karthik put down a simple chance offered by MS Dhoni in the 14th over, much to the anger of Agarkar. Raina and Dhoni maintained a good run-rate while entering the bereavement overs. Raina was the first to step on the accelerator, scoring successive sixers off Mendis in the 16th over. Raina went on to score his fifty with a six off Dinda. However his innings came to an end just after that when he holed out to Shukla, who looked to be the only fielder in the Knight Riders camp capable of taking the catch.

Brendon McCullumDhoni and Morkel kept the runs coming, donning the attacking role during the end overs. Morkel finished off the run uprising in style with two sixers and a four in the final over taking Chennai to a formidable score of 188/3.

With an up-hill task in hand, KKR Skipper Brendon McCullum started off aggressively, with boundaries and sixers flowing freely off his bat. His hard hitting ensured that KKR's run-rate was on par with Chennai. However, Sourav Ganguly on the other hand, was looking like a fish out of the water, struggling to put bat to ball. His depression came to an end when he dragged a Muralitharan delivery back on to the stumps. McCullum was in no temper to give up. He reserved the shots coming and went on to register the fastest fifty in the IPL, taking just 21 balls to get 50. Hodge played the perfect side-kick as the duo closed in on the required target.


Brad HodgeJust when things going right for Kolkata Knight Rider, Skipper Brendon McCullum's blazing innings came to an end. The Knight Riders skipper missed out on a well deserved century after receiving out to Jakati on 81 off just 46 balls. His innings included 11 fours and 3 sixes. More drama was to follow when David Hussey was run-out in the 16th over with KKR requiring 56 runs to win. Brad Hodge took over and he never let the drive slip away. He took a leaf out of McCullum's innings and led the path for Kolkata. He went on to score a well made fifty during the process. With well support from Saha, Hodge took it to the last over requiring 6 runs to win. Raina was picked by Dhoni to bowl the final over. However he could not do much as Hodge and Saha held their nerves and took Kolkata to a well deserved victory. Hodge remained unbeaten 71 off just 44 balls. His innings included 4 fours and 4 sixers.

Man of the match: Brad Hodge

Delhi Daredevils had achieved Semi-final stage

Delhi Daredevils home-bred all-rounder Rajat Bhatia reacted tens of thousands of prayers, taking a critical catch that to off Deccan Chargers slide and claiming four wickets in the span of just nine deliveries to help his team grasp a magical 12-run victory on Wednesday.

From a exhilarating 149 for three, Deccan Chargers collapsed in a heap to 161 all out, losing 7 wickets in just 17 deliveries and making a hash of the chase of 174-run target. And this after Skipper Adam Gilchirst sent the side off to a fiery start with five sixes and five fours in making 64 off 33 balls; and Andrew Symonds followed it up with 41 off 22 balls.

On a day when fans lost count of the catches that went a begging, Bhatia held a good one to end Ravi Teja’s stay in the middle and his 63-run stand with Symonds. He was then entrusted with the task of bowling the 17th over with Deccan Chargers needing 25 runs off three overs. He responded by castling Symonds with a slower one and beating Dwayne Smith’s slog to bowled him with a slow leg-cutter.

Panic set in the Deccan Chargers ranks and the rest of the side fell without even putting up a feeble fight. Expensive in his first three overs, Ashish Nehra trapped Venugopal Rao with a superb short delivery that found the glove on the way to Dinesh Karthik. He then ran out RP Singh who tried to steal a single so that Chaminda Vaas could be on strike.

And in the next over, Bhatia was back to dismiss Pragyan Ojha and Shoaib Ahmed to wrap up a fantastic win for Delhi Daredevils and consolidate their position at the top of the table with 16 points from eight wins in 10 matches. Deccan Chargers have time till Saturday to recover from the shock of having gifted the match to Delhi Daredevils.

Then again, to call the victory a gift from Deccan Chargers would be quite unfair to Delhi Daredevils, especially a number of men like Tillekeratne Dilshan (37 off 18 balls, 7 fours and 1 six), AB de Villiers (44 off 36 balls) and the fantastic Karthik (44, 23 balls, 4 fours, 3 sixes) as well as Pradeep Sangwan who bowled a wonderful spell to finish with figures of 4-1-18-3.

Each of those men played a superb role in the victory. Dilshan, batting 1st down, hurried the scoring at the start, taking 24 runs off Shoaib Ahmed’s over; AB held the side together while Karthik provided the stunning flourish at the finish of the innings that saw the side raise 70 runs in the last six overs. Sangwan’s accuracy was so bewildering that Deccan Chargers let him bowl as many as 18 dot balls.

And yet, in the end, it was Bhatia who walked away with the man of the match award for his hand in Delhi Daredevils’ revival. Adam Gilchrist, of course, said there was no magic in what Delhi Daredevils had achieved and admitted that his side had lost the plot in the final stages of a match that they appeared to have well in control.

Rohit Sharma's hat-trick seals Deccans' win


Though there was drizzle in the morning, pleasant conditions were seen at the Centurion when Adam Gilchrist, Sachin Tendulkar were in the middle for the toss. Gilchrist won the toss elected to bat first.

Mumbai had a well start with the ball when the dangerous Gibbs was out to Dhawal Kulkarni in the 2nd over. Suman came in at number three and happening off with some well strokes. However, his innings did not last long as he was dismissed by Dwayne Bravo. Meanwhile, Gilchrist was playing a firm role, ensuring that Hyderabad did not lose more wickets. Rohit Sharma gave him fine company as the duo piled on the runs at a decent rate. Just when things were looking well for the Deccans, Gilchrist tried to plod across the line and was bowled by Raje in the 10th over. Hyderabad are at an unsteady position, going into the break at 63/3.

Post break, the firm hitting Dwayne Smith joined Rohit Sharma as the pair were trying to construct a partnership. However, the West Indian was sent back to the dug-out after creature bowled by Jayasuriya in the 13th over. Meanwhile, Rohit Sharma was playing industriously, trying to get Hyderabad to a sensible score. However, a superb catch by Bravo throughout a Malinga over, resulted in the dismissal of Rohit Sharma. Venugopal Rao hit some boundaries towards the end before he was run-out in the last over. Hyderabad completed the 20 overs at a rational score of 145/6.

A well bowling effort was the order of the day for Hyderabad, caring a target of 145. RP Singh got the team off to a dream start, dismissing the energetic opening duo of Jayasuriya and Tendulkar off following deliveries. The pair of Duminy and Pinal Shah started the save work. With a combination of excellent stroke-play and fragile shots the duo reached their fifty partnership. However, the partnership was broken down when Pinal Shah attempted a slog sweep off Suman, only to find Dwayne Smith fastener on to a catch at long-on. Mumbai went into the “Strategy Break” at 71/3 needs 75 more runs to win off 60 balls.

Duminy and Bravo start again the chase after the break. The duo put on quick runs as they were closing in on the required target. Hyderabad came back by captivating the wicket of Bravo. An attempted big one off Suman went wrong for Bravo and he holed out to Harris. Meanwhile Duminy bring up his fifty off just 45 balls.

More triumph was in store for the Deccans when Rohit Sharma dismissed Nayar and Harbhajan Singh of uninterrupted deliveries and ended the over on a hat-trick Chance. Rohit Sharma started the 18th over with Mumbai at 108/6 needs 38 runs to win of 18 balls. The action packed over maxim Duminy attempting to go for a big one over square-leg. However, the ball caught the glove and went straight into the hands of Gilchrist. Rohit Sharma got his first ever hat-trick while Mumbai's chances of a victory was getting dimmer. Rohit Sharma got his 4th wicket in the same over dismissing Saurabh Tiwiri. The purple cap holder RP Singh ended off the last over, giving away just 5 runs.

Hyderabad materialized victors by 20 runs thanks to the early break-throughs by RP Singh who dismissed the dangerous combo of Sachin and Jayasuriya, and a dream hat-trick towards the end by Rohit Sharma.

Man of the Match: Rohit Sharma

DareDevil thrash hapless KKR


McCullumKKR Skipper McCullum won the toss and elected to bat first. While Delhi fielded an unchanged side, Kolkata are made two changes. Moises Henriques swapped Chris Gayle and Laxmi Ratan Shukla replaced for Yashpal Singh.

van Wyk opened the innings with McCullum. The KKR skipper started off aggressively, trying to show his detractors wrong. He took the harass to the opposition, dealing in boundaries and sixes. He was good supported by van Wyk, who played the ideal frustrate for McCullum. However, the Kolkata skipper could not convert his start into a big score as he was dismissed by Sangwan in the seventh over. These bring to an end, a partnership of 58 runs between McCullum and van Wyk. After an classy beginning, The Delhi bowlers bowled a tight line and brought down the run-rate. At the end of 10 overs the Kolkata Knight Riders were at 69/1.

van WykBrad Hodge was the next man to start slow. Meanwhile, van Wyk doned the role of an attacker, scoring quick runs after the break. van Wyk took the attack to Sangwan, scoring three following fours off the 13th over. However, the bowler got his break dismissing Brad Hodge in the similar over. Henriques came in at the fall of the wicket and he gave well support as van Wyk was blistering away. van Wyk went on to score his 1st fifty. The duo continued to score at a fast rate, taking KKR to a good score. After a fine innings, van Wyk was out to Nehra in the last over, going for quick runs. The volatile batsman managed to score 74 runs off 48 balls. His innings with 11 boundaries. Kolkata ended the innings at 154/3, thanks to volatile batting by van Wyk, well supported by McCullum and Henriques.

GambhirDelhi started the chase with Gambhir and Warner at the crease. The pair started off well, playing for singles and twos with boundaries in-between. Warner and Gambhir balanced each other as they scored at a well rate. On the other hand, Kolkata's fielding sadness continued as mis-fields and missed catches dominated the events for the Knight Riders team. The skipper McCullum himself put down a sitter off Agarkar's bowling, giving Gambhir a second catch. However, Agarkar got his break dismissing the destructive Warner in the same over, thanks to the safe hands of Henriques. A partnership of 60 runs by the Delhi openers was bring to an end with Warner's dismissal. Dilshan came in at number three and he was continuous the good start provided by Warner. Going into the 10 over Daradevils were 76/1, requiring 79 more runs to win off 60 balls.

Gambhir and Dilshan start again after the break playing in a risk-free manner. Gambhir's drop catch established costly for KKR as the left-hander went on to his fifty. The fielding of Kolkata got from bad to worse when Dilshan was put down by Arindam Ghosh off Ishant Sharma's bowling. Dilshan and Gambhir made good use of the chances accessible, getting the Delhi team closer to the required target. Requiring 11 runs to win off the last two overs, Dilshan brought down the required runs with a six off Ishant Sharma. Gambhir finished it off with a boundary, announcing his return to form. Gambhir remained unbeaten on 71 off just 57 balls while Dilshan managed to score 42 off 34 balls.

Chennai Super kings overpower the Deccans


Riding on their fresh success against the Delhi Daredevils, the Chennai Super kings skipper MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to bat first. While there were no changes in the playing XI, Hyderabad had two changes. The Queenslander Ryan Harris replaced Fidel Edwards and Azhar Bilakhia made way for Laxman.

Matthew Hayden and Murali Vijay opened the innings for Chennai. While Hayden was at his violent best, taking the attack to the bowlers, Murali Vijay showed that the good cricketing strokes were equally helpful in the T20 format. Hyderabad got their first break-through when Hayden, after hitting a quick-fire 43, got out to Shoaib Ahmed. Looking for a good outing at the middle, Skipper MS Dhoni came in at number three. While Dhoni take time to settle down, Murali Vijay reserved the tempo on, maintaining the run-rate. After 10over Chennai were in a good position at 84/1.

MS DhoniThe Deccans got their 2nd wicket on the other side of the break. Murali Vijay, trying to go for a big one off Suman, holed out to Gibbs at long-off. The in-form Suresh Raina came in and got into the furrow straight away. Suman was at the getting end when he was hit for two sixers and a four by Raina. Dhoni, after taking his time, started to cut loose. The pair went on to bring up the fifty partnership, taking just 30 balls. Powerful hits by MS Dhoni towards the end took Chennai to a frightening score of 178. Dhoni remained unbeaten on 58 runs off just 37 balls. He included 6 fours and a six.

After gettng a good score on the board, an positive Chennai side were off to a dream start with the ball. While Skipper Adam Gilchrist was trapped LBW off the very first ball by Morkel, his opening partner Herschelle Gibbs was bowled by Sudeep Tyagi in the 2nd over of the innings. Deccans slouched further when VVS Laxman flaked a Morkel delivery straight to Jakati. Hyderabad's top three got out without scoring a single run.

Dwayne SmithDwayne Smith connected Rohit Sharma at the crease as the pair attempted a turn-around. Smith launched an attack on the bowlers shining them away to all parts of the park. The pair put on a partnership of 72 runs before Rohit got out to Jakati. After surviving multiple chances, the dangerous Dwayne Smith finally out, trapped LBW by Jakati in the same over. Dwayne Smith chopped one run short of his fifty. His innings of 49 came off just 23 balls and included 2 fours and 5 sixers. At the end of 10 overs, Deccans had lost half their side at 79/5.

Post break, The lower half of the Hyderabad team could not add much in the chase. Jakati's dream run in the IPL sustained as he dismissed Venugopal Rao and Ryan Harris, picking up one more four wicket haul. Muralitharan got his share of the Hyderabad scalps, picking up the wickets of RP Singh and Suman. Raina draped it up by dismissing Ojha.

A jubilant Chennai got their third following victory thanks to good batting and bowling by the team. However, MS Dhoni would have been disenchanted with the fielding efforts of the team with lots of chances going down.

Man of the Match : MS Dhoni


Mumbai Indians win against improved Kolkata Knight Riders


With last time's beating still fresh in their minds, given that it happened just 4 days ago, the Kolkata Knight Riders looked to come out with more reason this time against the Mumbai Indians. They surely put up an improved show, but ultimately fell short.

Sachin Tendulkar won the toss, and selected to bat first. On a much slower wicket than the last time though, Sachin and Jayasuriya didn't find strokeplay as easy as before. Jayasuriya deceased early, trying to beat Dinda out of the park, but only succeeding in edging it to the keeper. Mumbai sent in Harbhajan Singh, but the trial didn't succeed, with Bhajji also falling early. Kolkata kept the force on, when Agarkar got Tendulkar. Sachin had hit the bowler for a six and a four, but ended up hitting a full toss straight to cover.When Nayar fell, just after the strategy break, Kolkata would have imaginary their chances of keeping Mumbai to below 140, but in JP Duminy, Mumbai had their top. He was kept calm initially, and with wickets falling, he didn't attempt to hit out, but concentrated on getting the singles and twos. Graham Napier gave him some hold up, but it was after Napier's dismissal that Duminy stepped up a gear. The last four overs fetch Mumbai 51 runs, with Duminy scoring 36 off those from 15 balls. He ended the innings with his 4th 6, bringing up his fifty in the process. Mumbai ended up with 148 for 6, while Duminy had 52 not out off 37 balls - his second successive half-century.

Kolkata wanted a good start from its openers to chase Mumbai's score, and the opening pair who walked out for Kolkata was a shock - it was Sourav Ganguly who walked out with Chris Gayle. The conclusion made cricketing sense, because McCullum was out of touch, while Ganguly and Gayle were Kolkata's best batsmen. However, Kolkata hadn't reckoned with Zaheer Khan.

Sourav was out off the first ball he faced, dragging one back onto his stumps, while Gayle was bowled when he failed to select the slower one. Hodge and Morne van Wyk then started re-building the innings, and after a long time Kolkata looked to be rival on equal terms with another side. Hodge and Wyk added 89 runs for the 3rd wicket, with Bradly Hodge reaching the first half-century by a Kolkata batsman this year. Even after van Wyk got out, Kolkata were in the chase, until a game changing 17th over bowled by Malinga, where he give just 7 runs. That over was followed by an equally good one by Zaheer Khan, where Kolkata lost the wicket of Shukla and scored just 8 runs, which left them with a mini-mountain of 23 runs from 2 overs. With McCullum plummeting himself down the order, and joining Hodge, it was still possible, but Malinga conceded just 4 runs off his last over, to effectively seal the issue. To top it all, Hodge was run out for very fine 73 off 60 balls, badly seeking a non-existent second run. 19 off the last over was always going to be very hard to get, and Kolkata eventually lost by 9 runs.

Man of the Match: JP Duminy