Royals hold on to beat Chargers in thriller
Shane Warne rolled back the years with a devastating spell of bowling picking up four wickets to help the Rajasthan Royals claim a 2 run victory over the Deccan Chargers to stay in contention for a place in the semi finals.
Warne picked up three wickets in the space of 14 balls at the end of the Chargers run chase as the defending champions came up just short in a nail biting last over.
The home side went into the last over needing just 6 runs for victory but they lost three wickets to slump to a 2 run defeat which leaves them on the verge of elimination from the chase a place in the semi finals.
The Chargers got off their run chase off to the perfect start smashing 20 runs of Shane Watson’s first over as Adam Gilchrist found the boundary three times in over that consisted of 10 balls after Watson bowled four wides.
Aditya Dole struck back on his IPL debut picking up the wicket of VVS Laxman (6) before returning in the fourth over to dismiss Gilchrist (34) after he had smashed the Indian youngster for two big sixes earlier in the over.
Andrew Symonds and Rohit Sharma built a third wicket partnership of 39 to help the Chargers recover after losing the two early wickets.
Symonds (15), who had looked unconvincing during his time at the crease threw away his wicket after swinging wildly at a deliver from Siddharth Trivedi which he top edge through to Faiz Fazal at extra cover to leave the Chargers 86-3.
Sharma came to the crease with the Chargers in deep trouble and although the defending champions kept on losing wickets his brilliant innings seemed to have lead the home side to victory until Warne’s devastating spell which set up a thrilling final over.
Having won the toss the Royals decided to bat first as the game got off to a frantic start with Ryan Harris in the middle of the action after dropping Michael Lumb in the first over before the Englishman had scored.
Harris juggle the ball before catching it on his third attempt just as the ball hit the floor, all though Lumb walked he was called back by umpire Simon Taufel after TV replays showed the ball hit the floor.
Lumb made Harris pay by smashing 2 boundaries and a massive six over long off before the fast bowler got his revenge in the third over when he caught Lumb out of the boundary to give RP Singh the break through.
Amazingly Harris was involved again 2 balls later with another catch as Naman Ojha (1) was dismissed cheaply to leave the Royals 17-2.
Fazal and Watson responded well after the loss of the two earlier wickets by building a 3rd wicket partnership of 77 which saw the Royals start to increase the pressure on the Chargers bowlers.
The home side struck back though with Pragyan Ojha dismissing Fazal (36) before danger man Yusuf Pathan (5) was caught by VVS Laxman to give Harris his first wicket of the day.
The Royals continued to lose wickets at regular intervals but with Watson (58) still at the crease the visitors maintained their run rate until the Aussie became Singh’s third victim of the night to leave the visitors 136-7.
The Royals innings started to fizzle out after Watson’s contribution as they slumped to 159 all out to leave the Chargers on top in a must win game for both teams.