Felix Austin | cricket20
The Deccan Chargers suffered a top order collapse as they suffered a 41 run defeat against the Mumbai Indians after they were rocked by Harbhajan Singh who picked up 3 wickets and scored a quick fire 49 from just 18 balls.
The Indians were indebted to Harbhajan Singh who’s 18 ball innings allowed them to set the Chargers a target of 173 after they had been reduced to 119-7.
The Chargers got of to the worst possible start losing skipper Adam Gilchrist from the second ball of the innings thanks to a stunning reflex catch by Sachin Tendulkar at first slip giving the impressive Harbhajan Singh the break though.
Herschelle Gibbs fired back smashing a rapid 16 ball 27 which included two sixes of the bowling of Zaheer Khan but when the South African picked out Kieron Pollard at square leg the Chargers middle order collapsed.
Monish Mishra (13) and Andrew Symonds (1) were dismissed by Lasith Malinga in the next over as the Chargers lost 3 wickets in the space of 9 balls to be reduced to 50-4.
Tirumalasetti Suman and Rohit Sharma offered some hope with a 31 run partnership but when Suman (15) was caught by Harbhajan Singh off his own bowling the Chargers chances of winning the game all but disappeared.
Wickets continued the fall as the Chargers slumped to a disappointing 41 run defeat.
Having lost the toss and put into bat the Indians enjoyed a good start to their innings despite losing opener Shikhar Dhawan (8) in the third over after he was trapped LBW by Jaskaran Singh.
Tendulkar, who’s averaging 64 in this years tournament was joined at the crease by Dwayne Bravo and the pair built the foundations of an excellent partnership before Bravo (23) was dismissed in the 7th over by RP Singh.
The partnership had reached 40 when Bravo picked out Andrew Symonds at long off to give the Chargers a vital breakthrough. Two balls later, Saurabh Tiwary followed Bravo back to the dug out after he was caught by Adam Gilchrist to leave the Indians 68-3.
The Indians stutters continued when Ambati Rayudu (6) was stumped by Gilchrist to give Pragyan Ojha his first wicket of the innings and then Rajagopal Sathish (3) was caught by Tirumalasetti Suman to reduce the Indians to 92-5.
Kieron Pollard (1) become the sixth Indians batsman to be dismissed when he was caught by Suman at third man to give Jaskaran Singh his second wicket of the innings as the visitors innings was in danger collapsing with the score 93-6.
Although the Chargers had picked up six wickets Tendulkar remained at the crease, joined by South African Ryan McLaren the Indians skipper reached another IPL half century but he was unable to push on after he was caught by Gilchrist to leave the Indians 119-7.
With the Indians in big trouble Harbhajan Singh came to the crease and his innings of 49 help the Indians reach 172-7 giving them the perfect opportunity to record their fifth win in this years tournament.