Bushrangers cruise to easy victory
The Victorian Bushrangers cruised to an easy 7 wicket victory over the Royal Challengers Bangalore to start their Super Eights campaign with a win at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
A dominant Victoria Bushrangers put one foot in the semi-finals of the Champions League Twenty20 after crushing local favourites Royal Challengers Bangalore by seven wickets in League B encounter.
Having restricted the hosts to a modest 127/6 in the League B opener, the Victorians rode on cameos from Rob Quiney (29), Brad Hodge (25), Aiden Blizzard (21) and David Hussey (31 not out off 15 balls) to cruise to 133/3 and complete a facile win with 4.1 overs to spare.
Earlier, Manish Pandey (39 off 28 balls) briefly grabbed the Victorian attack by the scruff of its neck before McDonald (4/21) intervened and the fumbling hosts needed a propping-up act from Rahul Dravid (33 off 35 balls) to reach a competitive total.
The meagreness of the total and the turn on offer prompted Anil Kumble to open the attack himself but the early wickets he was desperately looking for never actually came.
On the contrary, Quiney added 48 runs with Hodge and 47 with Blizzard to lay the perfect foundation for a successful chase and Hussey completed the job hitting three sixes off the 15th over sent down by Kumble.
The Victorians went into the match with a two-point cushion, courtesy their first round win over fellow League B campaigner Delhi Daredevils and tonight's win virtually books them a place in the semifinals.
On the other hand, Royal Challengers badly needed to win tonight to keep things uncomplicated but the loss means they now stand only a theoretical chance of advancing further.
The dryness of the track made both captains, Anil Kumble and Cameron White, craving to bat first but it was the Bangalore captain whose wish was granted in the end.
With Manish Pandey, one of the two replacements along with Dale Steyn, making his presence count, Kumble had the satisfaction of seeing his team getting off to a rollicking start.
First Indian to slam a century in the IPL, Pandey's nonchalant aggression was in full display as he hit Shane Harwood for back-to-back fours before extending the same harsh treatment to Peter Siddle.
Taking a cue from Pandey, in-form Robin Uthappa (13) greeted Clint McKay with successive fours before the dragging the Australian's fourth delivery onto his stumps as the blooming opening stand wilted for 39 in 4.4 overs.
Andrew McDonald then turned the match on its head with a three-wicket burst as the hosts slumped from the comfort of 39 for no loss to the predicament of 79/4.
Pandey was looking good for a half-century when he played a shot too early and Andrew McDonald took a smart catch off his own bowling.
Axed this morning from India's first two ODIs against Australia later this month, Rahul Dravid (33 off 35) did not show signs of any personal agony even if there was one and gamely hung on.
Unfortunately for the hosts, neither Virat Kohli (6) nor Ross Taylor (2) could show the same grit and fell to McDonald in quick successions.
McDonald, however, was not satiated yet and he signed off with the prized scalp of Dravid.