Royals ravage Hyderabad

2013-05-22 21:11
Brad Hodge
New Delhi - Brad Hodge powered the Rajasthan Royals to a four–wicket win in the Pepsi Indian Premier League eliminator against the Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi on Wednesday.

Hodge smashed the first two deliveries of the final over for consecutive sixes to fire the Royals into Friday’s semi-finals against the Mumbai Indians as he steered Rajasthan to 135 for six.

Earlier, Darren Sammy’s cameo (29, 21 balls, 3x6) and Cameron White guided the Sunrisers to 132 for seven on a slow track against a disciplined attack.

Hodge arrived at the crease with Rajasthan in dire straits on 57 for five, but he weathered the storm with a sensational 54 runs off 29 balls, including five sixes to transform near disaster into triumph.

The Sunrisers struck four times in the space of twenty balls to rattle Rajasthan.

They also rallied magnificently at the business end of the match when Thisara Perera conceded only five runs in the penultimate over to push the match into a final over.

But Sammy, temporarily the hero earlier in the innings with two wickets and an athletic catch on the midwicket-boundary, turned villain in that 20th over.

He bowled a long hop and a full-length delivery, and Hodge obliged with a pulled six and a magnificent on-drive for the winning runs.

Hodge stabilized the innings with Sanju Samson, and then pounced in the space of two overs.

He smashed 18 runs in an over off the young leg-spinner Karam Sharma and another six in Amit Mishra’s final over to swing the pendulum in the favour of Rajasthan.

James Faulkner and Hodge survived a fiery onslaught from Dale Steyn.

The South African let it rip at speeds of up to 145 kilometres per hour and trapped Samson in front for 10 to give the Sunrisers a glimmer of hope. Steyn finished with 1-23.

Earlier, Watson propelled Rajasthan to 50 for one in the seventh over and targeted Ishant Sharma for some special treatment.

Sammy temporarily threatened to change the complexion of the match with athletic fielding and some shrewd bowling.

Rajasthan collapsed from 50 for one to 57 for five after his double-strike.

A well-timed jump by Sammy to intercept a full-bloodied pull by Watson rocked Rajasthan.

Watson was in full cry and had scored 24 off fifteen balls before that setback restricted Rajasthan to 50 for two.

Sammy, fired up by his fielding masterpiece, bowled Dishant Yagnik for a duck.

He also bowled Stuart Binny through the gate for 2 to give the Sunrisers the edge.

Earlier, a timely batting onslaught by Sammy helped the Sunrisers to scramble 55 runs in the final five overs. His three sixes gave the struggling batting-order vital momentum.

The Sunrisers struggled to get to terms with the pace of the wicket and managed seven boundaries in the first fourteen overs.

The Royals bowling attack used slower deliveries to unsettle the Sunrisers. Virkamjeet Malik, with 2-14, and Siddharth Trivedi, with 1-18, were the standout-performers.

Shikhar Dhawan scored a slow 33 off 39 balls and failed to ignite the innings.

Faulkner finished with 1-28.

He has taken 27 wickets in his first IPL-season.


Rajasthan Royals: R Dravid (capt), AM Rahane, SR Watson, SV Samson, STR Binny, BJ Hodge, DH Yagnik (wk), K Cooper, JP Faulkner, VS Malik, SK Trivedi

Sunrisers Hyderabad: PA Patel (wk), S Dhawan, GH Vihari, CL White (capt), NLTC Perera, BB Samantray, DJG Sammy, KV Sharma, A Mishra, DW Steyn, I Sharma


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