Royals crush Chargers with late comeback
A magnificent 71 from Graeme Smith powered the Rajasthan Royals to an amazing 3 wicket victory over the Deccan Chargers at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad.
Captain Shane Warne hit the fourth and fifth ball of the final over for two huge sixes to ensure Rajasthan Royals a three-wicket win over the Deccan Chargers in the Indian Premier League match at Hyderabad on Thursday.
Needing 17 runs to win off the last over, Warne clobbered a hapless Symonds to snatch the match away.
South African Graeme Smith (71), playing in his first match, and Yusuf Pathan (61) were the other major contributors for the Rajasthan team while Mohammad Kaif also chipped in with an aggressive 16-ball 34.
Shahid Afridi was the most successful bowler for the home team for three wickets.
Earlier, Andrew Symonds struck form, hitting the fastest hundred of the tournament to steer Deccan Chargers to a challenging 214 for five.
Put in to bat, the hosts overcame early blows to pile up the huge total, thanks to some lusty hitting by Symonds and his 111-run fourth-wicket stand with Rohit Sharma (36).
Symonds hit an unbeaten 117-run knock, studded with seven sixes and 11 boundaries off 53 balls, making full use of a dropped chance at the individual score of 75.
Yusuf Pathan failed to latch on a catch off Siddharth Trivedi at point giving the Australian a chance to notch up his hundred in just 47-balls.
And he did it in style by lofting the rival skipper Shane Warne for a huge long-on six, during his superb innings, which made the rival bowlers look like ordinary.
Paceman Munaf Patel and spin-great Warne bore the brunt of the Symonds fury as they conceded 55 and 47 runs in their quota of four overs.
Chargers' skipper VVS Laxman came to open the batting with Australian Adam Gilchrist and the duo put on 22 for the first wicket before Yusuf Pathan's double strike in the third over.
Royals skipper Shane Warne brought in Pathan early in the innings and the bowler responded with two wickets in an eventful over.
Pathan dismissed the dangerous Gilchrist (13) on the second ball of the over as the Australian came forward, got deceived in the air, and was stumped by wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal.
Shahid Afridi then joined his skipper and hit a six and a boundary before handing a catch to Ravinder Jadeja at mid-on while attempting a big shot.
Laxman (16) and Symonds then put on 43 runs for the third-wicket, which not only helped hosts to recover from 32 for two but set the platform for the big score.
Laxman bacame vicitm of Warne as he offered a caught and bowled chance while flicking, which the leggie accepted gleefully.