Also See: Scorecard | Gallery | Sehwag helps Delhi storm past Mumbai
It came down to 29 from 12 in the end, with David Miller (80*) and Mandeep Singh (77*) at the crease. The penultimate over began with Ashok Dinda being smashed for two fours by David Miller, one down the ground, and the other past point. Both deliveries being full tosses. It took a comforting gloved arm from Robin Uthappa to help Dinda keep his nerve. Giving away three singles is all right. But when Mandeep took two off the final ball, courtesy a misfield from third man Rahul Sharma, Dinda offered a mouthful.
Was it in Bengali or in English? Difficult to tell.
Luke Wright came in to bowl the final six deliveries. Miller and Mandeep traded strike, and the South African readied himself for the final four balls. Wright bowled full, and was smashed for six. Two runs later, the target came down to six from two. Man-of-the-Match Miller got a dull full toss, and was more than happy to send the ball over long off for a six, and was quickly surrounded by his mates from the dugout.
That is a great way to finish a cricket match.
It didn’t look like a Kings XI Punjab show at the start of the match though. Adam Gilchrist dropped Aaron Finch on one. When it was his turn to bat, the Aussie came out with a different set of gloves and a bat. He edged the ball like his counterpart, only to be caught by Pune keeper Robin Uthappa.
Finch made 64, Gilchrist made 4.
A contrasting tale describing the fortunes of two captains, one that began with the left-handed legend winning the toss and electing to field at the PCA stadium in Mohali.
Finch made Gilchrist pay for his mistake, by hitting the bowler- Azhar Mahmood for a six and a four in the same over. Kings XI didn’t exactly help themselves by bowling short, only to find Finch and Uthappa helping themselves to boundaries. Both batsmen used the pull shot to good effect, making room when they anticipated the length early, to go for their shots. Uthappa however failed to convert yet another good start, edging the ball to Gilchrist.
Awana flashed a big smile and celebrated by spreading his arms.
Yuvraj Singh joined Finch in the middle, and found his groove right away by picking on Piyush Chawla. The Australian meanwhile went on to make 64, smashing two sixes and eight fours. He walked back after falling to Manpreet Gony, who had a couple of things to say during the send off. Yuvraj put his back into hitting two sixes off Awana, before miscuing a stroke that ended up in Gurkeerat Singh’s hands.
Enter Luke Wright. The Englishman playing his first IPL match did everything right, at least with the bat, smashing Azhar Mahmood for four consecutive fours. It was Praveen Kumar’s turn for some bitter English medicine next, and the medium-pacer could only watch as Wright milked two fours and a six. There were six other runs in the over, and six more deliveries to go.
Pune Warriors eventually finished with 185/4, with Wright making 34 off just 10. Both teams had a ball with the bat, just that Pune did everything Wright, only to get it wrong in the end!