Deccan deepen Pune's woes
Ken Borland - SuperSport
Mumbai - The Deccan Chargers breezed to a six-wicket victory over the Pune Warriors with four balls to spare in their IPL match at the D.Y. Patil Sports Academy on Monday.
Chasing just 137 for victory, the Chargers were off to a fine start as openers Sunny Sohal (34) and Shikhar Dhawan (28) put on 67 off eight overs. A quickfire cameo of 25 from Kumar Sangakarra then all but sealed the win, although questions will be asked about a lacklustre Warriors team that seemed to give up very early and never applied any real pressure after the opening stand.
JP Duminy will be pleased he managed to get some runs behind his name, although his 23 was the scratchiest of the top-order innings'.
Leg-spinner Rahul Sharma was the one Pune player to impress, continuing his wonderful tournament with fine figures of two for 25 in his four overs. South African fast bowler Wayne Parnell took one for 27 in 3.2 overs.
An exceptional bowling display by the Deccan Chargers had earlier restricted the Pune Warriors to just 136 for nine.
Leg-spinner Amit Mishra led the way with excellent figures of two for 26, while seamer Daniel Christian (two for 13 in three) and left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha (two for 35) were also outstanding.
South African fast bowler Dale Steyn was also in fine form with one for 23, and bowled better than his figures suggest because he delivered the penultimate over, in which eight runs were scored and Christian also dropped Mitchell Marsh at long-on.
The Warriors will be extremely thankful for the young Australian's efforts down the order as he blitzed a quickfire 37 off 28 balls, including three sixes as he showed admirable composure and ball-striking ability.
But no-one else passed 30 as the Warriors posted a total that was not much of a challenge for the Chargers to chase down, even though the pitch was turning.
Pune made a bright start as openers Jesse Ryder and Manish Pandey (23) scored 31 in the first four overs, before Steyn had Ryder caught in the covers for 18.
The Warriors then crashed to 45 for five as they lost four wickets in three overs, with Christian starting the rot by having Saurav Ganguly caught in the covers off a short-pitched delivery for a duck.
Spinners Mishra and Ojha then exposed the lower-order, before veteran skipper Yuvraj Singh provided some resistance with his innings of 23.
But it only temporarily patched up the wound as Duminy got Callum Ferguson (11) out, followed soon afterwards by Yuvraj, caught behind off Christian, as Pune slumped to 92 for seven.
But Marsh's exemplary innings, with Parnell providing excellent support with a run-a-ball 16, gave Pune a late boost.
Pune Warriors: MK Pandey, SC Ganguly, JD Ryder, RV Uthappa†, Yuvraj Singh*, CJ Ferguson, MR Marsh, WD Parnell, R Sharma, B Kumar, M Manhas
Deccan Chargers: S Dhawan, S Sohal, B Chipli, KC Sangakkara*†, JP Duminy, DB Ravi Teja, DT Christian, PP Ojha, A Mishra, I Sharma, DW Steyn