Cuttack: When Parthiv Patel got bowled off the first delivery of the match, Kumar Sangakkara must have for a brief moment pondered over his decision to bat first after winning the toss against Sourav Ganguly-led Pune Warriors India on Tuesday.
Deccan Chargers: 186/4 beat Pune Warriors: 173/5 by 13 runs
The quick departure of Shikhar Dhawan seemed to prove his decision wrong but for Cameron White and himself then took charge of the innings and stemmed the flow of wickets. A sedate start followed and halfway down the innings they were 58/2. The innings picked gear from then onwards and when Marlon Samuels came in to bowl his third over of the match, Sanga took him to cleaners while cutting, driving and sweeping him all over the park for 19 runs that included four boundaries.
That was just a trailor and the real hitting came during the 18th and 19th over when the two batsmen collected 50 runs. The first one of the two bowled by Ganguly went for 25 runs and the destroyer was Cameron White. He hit him for three consecutive sixes—2 towards square leg boundary and one over deep midwicket—and a four off the first ball.
The next over was from Ashish Nehra and on strike was Kumar Sangakkara. The over began on a similar note as Nehra was hit for a boundary off the first ball. The next two were hit for four and the last three produced-6, 4 and 6. He though got out off the last delivery (the six coming off a no ball) after getting bowled.
Sangakkar made 82(52) while Cameron 74(45). Together they forged a partnership of 157 runs in 14.2 overs setting a target of 187 runs for Pune to chase.
Pune’s innings began in a similar fashion as that of Chargers when Manish Pandey, who in all his eagerness went on the assault from the word go but was caught at mid on by Sangakkara while trying to clear him off the first ball.
Their batsmen, Sourav Ganguly and Michael Clarke took charge and took the score to 75/1after 10 overs. They needed to shift the gears up a bit but failed to do so. They alos failed to make use of the poor fielding of the Chargers who have come in for criticism for the same on previous occasions as well.
Michael Clarke (41) and Sourav Ganguly(45) perished in quick succession leaving the daunting task to chase the target on the shoulders of Steven Smith and Robin Uthappa. Smith tried his best with some big hitting including two sixes and three boundaries but fell short of overs to do the same owing largely to the slow innings from Clarke and Ganguly at the top.
Dale Steyn looked a bit off-colour and gave away 46 runs in his quota of four overs. For Pune, Bhuvneshwar Kumar bowled a tight spell giving away just 22 runs in four overs and taking a wicket as well.