'Superman' De Villiers steers RCB into IPL final

2016-05-24 20:41
Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers (TEAMtalk Media)

Bangalore - South Africa's AB de Villiers hit an unbeaten 79 to single-handedly steer Royal Challengers Bangalore into the Indian Premier League cricket final, beating Gujarat Lions by four wickets in the first Qualifier Tuesday.

Chasing 159 for victory at Bangalore's M Chinnaswamy Stadium, the Royal Challengers were reduced to 68 for six before De Villiers' blitz fired the team home in 18.2 overs.

Gujarat medium pacer Dhawal Kulkarni (4-14) hurt Bangalore with early strikes as red-hot openers Virat Kohli (0) and Chris Gayle (9) were back in the dug out early.

Coming in at number three De Villiers stayed calm to stitch an unbeaten 91-run partnership with Iqbal Abdullah (33) to stun the opposition in front of a raucous home crowd.

Man of the match De Villiers smashed five fours and five sixes during his 47-ball stay as the top-order batsman snatched victory out of the jaws of defeat.

Earlier put into bat Gujarat rode on West Indies batsman Dwayne Smith's 41-ball 73 to post a respectable 158 all out in 20 overs.

Smith lifted Gujarat from a precarious nine for three to stitch a 85-run fourth wicket partnership with Dinesh Karthik as the duo counter attacked with great effect.

The Windies allrounder took charge to teach the Bangalore spinners a bitter lesson as he smashed five boundaries and 6 sixes during his entertaining knock.

Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal got the dangerous Smith back in the dug out as Australian allrounder Shane Watson (4-29) wiped out the Gujarat tail.

After left-arm spinner Abdullah's double strike to get openers Brendon McCullum and Aaron Finch out early it was Watson who hurt Gujarat's bid to score big.

The Suresh Raina-led Gujarat though will have another shot at securing a final berth when they meet the winner of the Eliminator in the second Qualifier in New Delhi on Friday.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

The Proteas have announced plans to play a four-day Test against Zimbabwe starting on Boxing Day. What do you make of this?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.