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Fernando on fire as Bangalore slumps

A top-order collapse initiated by Dilhara Fernando and a middle-order implosion caused by Dwayne Smith seriously dented the chances of the Bangalore Royal Challengers to post an impressive score as they could muster only 122/9.

The match was reduced to 18 overs because of a rain delay.

A late surge by R. Vinay Kumar (23, 17 balls, 2x4, 1x6) helped the Challengers to 122/9.

Fernando, with 4/18, and Smith, with 3/26, were the destroyers-in-chief.

Bangalore has had problems with their opening partnerships throughout the IPL campaign. In an attempt to add more explosive power up front, they promoted Mark Boucher to the role of opening batsmen with Shreevats Goswami.

They added 35 runs before the introduction of Fernando halted their charge.

He introduced a slow bouncer which Boucher pulled into the willing hands of deep mid-wicket as Boucher departed for 18 (15 balls, 3x4).

Fernando then picked up two more wickets within the space of four deliveries as the Challengers slumped to 39/3. Misbah-ul-Haq was caught by Sachin Tendulkar for a duck, while Goswami was caught by Nehra off Fernando for 20 (24 balls, 1x4).

Cameron White was the only player to inject some urgency into the faltering batting of Bangalore and he added 35 runs with Rahul Dravid before the Australian was caught by Fernando off Smith for 26 (20 balls, 3x4, 1x6).

The dismissal of White sparked another mini-collapse as four wickets fell for only nine runs in two overs, with the part-time bowler Smith been the main beneficiary of some shockingly inept batting.

Dravid could add only eleven runs off sixteen deliveries, without scoring a boundary.

The Indians are no longer in the hunt for a semi-final spot, and the only thing left to do is to avenge their home defeat against the Royal Challengers early on in the campaign.

source - supersport.co.za
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