Imran Tahir and co ended the Supergiant’s three-match losing streak with a 27 run win over the Royal Challengers at the Chinnaswamy stadium today. RCB had done well to restrict RPS to just 161, but the visitor's bowlers produced a masterclass as the home side could only manage 134 in their 20 overs.
Brief scores: Rising Pune Supergiant 161/8 (Rahul Tripathi 31, Ajinkya Rahane 30; Adam Milne 2/27, Sreenath Arvind 2/29) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 134/9 (AB de Villiers 29, Virat Kohli 28, Shardul Thakur 3/35; Ben Stokes 3/18) by 27 runs.
Winning his first toss of the tournament, Virat Kohli decided it was time his team had a go at chasing a target, as he put in Rising Pune Supergiant to bat first. RCB made two changes to the team that lost to Mumbai a couple of days ago as Chris Gayle and the unwell Tymal Mills were left out in place of Shane Watson and Adam Milne. Pune, too, made a couple of changes of their own, bringing in Dan Christian and Jaydev Unadkat to replace Lockie Ferguson and Ankit Sharma.
Pune finally get their opening combination right
Pune got off to a slow start on a batsman-friendly pitch, scoring just eight runs off the first two overs with Milne and last game’s hattrick hero, Samuel Badree, hitting good lengths. However, Tripathi, who had scored just three runs till then, decided to go on the offensive, smashing Milne and Sreenath Arvind all around the ground. Rahane joined the party as well, hitting Watson for back-to-back boundaries to end the powerplay overs with the scoreboard reading 55/0. With the team leaking runs, Bangalore needed some inspiration and it came from an unlikely source in Kedar Jadhav who pulled off an “MS Dhoni-
The lower order collapses again
Following the wickets, the run rate went down as Pune scored just 38 runs off the next five overs to give Bangalore a foothold in the game. The duo decided to attack Watson and the Aussie was hit for boundaries by both batsmen. However, it was the 35-year-old who had the final laugh dismissing Dhoni in the same over. It was all downhill from there for the visitors as they lost four wickets in just eight balls with Steven Smith, Daniel Christian, Ben Stokes, and Shardul Thakur falling cheaply. Manoj Tiwary's late burst of 27 from just 11 balls could only propel the Supergiant to 161, which looked well short of where they were looking to end up after 10 overs.
Pune fight back after Kohli’s quick start
Smith decided to start off with season debutant Unadkat, who in his only match for the Pune side last year had conceded 49 runs in three overs. The 25-year-old did not have a good start to this campaign as well with Kohli flicking his third ball over the deep square leg boundary. Even though Mandeep Singh was dismissed for a duck in the next over, de Villiers, who joined Kohli, made his intent clear as he pieced the infield to score a boundary at
Pune bowlers defend lowest ever total at the Chinnaswamy
Just when Bangalore needed de Villiers to accelerate, Pune’s strike bowler, Imran Tahir, dismissed his compatriot after some good work by Dhoni behind the wickets. The South African’s dismissal put the home side further on the back foot as they scored just 20 runs in four overs. Stuart Binny, who came in after the dismissal of Jadhav, and Watson scored a boundary a piece off Stokes but the Englishman claimed the scalp of the Aussie to put Pune well in control of the game.Needing 60 to win off four overs, Binny continued his lone fight, hitting Christian for 13 runs in an over but it was not to be as Pune wrapped up the win by 27 runs to end their three-match losing streak.