A high-flying host stumbled at the Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Thursday night. Royal Challengers Bangalore, the in-form team of the DLF Indian Premier League III, lost its way as the middle-order remained lukewarm while pursuing Delhi Daredevils' 183 for four.
RCB finished with 166 for nine and suffered a 17-run defeat, its second loss in six matches, while Daredevils gained its third victory.
Needing to score at 9.2 per over, RCB enjoyed another solid start as Manish Pandey (39) and Jacques Kallis (27) shared 71 runs. But just when the innings looked set for the final gallop, the home team lost four wickets in a heap.
Kallis and Pandey connected air while swinging their bats and Rahul Dravid attempted a suicidal second run. It got worse for RCB when an impish Uthappa tried to reverse-sweep Amit Mishra and lobbed up a simple catch for Daredevils captain Dinesh Karthik.
The required equation had boiled down to 94 from 48 deliveries and the much-required defining innings or sticky alliance remained a mirage as two more run-outs smudged the score-sheet.
For Daredevils, it was a welcome return to winning ways and the high point was A.B. de Villiers's stunning right-handed airborne catch off Praveen Kumar's meaty strike.
Earlier, despite missing an injured Gautam Gambhir, the Daredevils' start proved to be a bout of frenetic hitting after Anil Kumble opted to field.
David Warner flung his bat around at Praveen Kumar and Dale Steyn while Virender Sehwag indulged in the deft flick and upper-cut.
The frenzy proved short-lived as Warner tried to pound Steyn and found a waiting Vinay Kumar (one for 29), who was soon in the thick of things.
Vinay's first delivery evoked a mighty heave from Sehwag and as Virat Kohli held the miscued hit, Daredevils had lost its primary enforcer.
The RCB bowlers also found their breath with Vinay bowling tight lines topped up with subtle variations. Gradually, Daredevils moved ahead as de Villiers (45) and Kedar Jadhav (50 n.o., 29b, 5x4, 2x6), through their contrasting patterns of orthodox and unconventional styles, propelled the score while Dinesh Karthik was caught off-guard as he backed up too far at the non-striker's end. But in the end, it was a night when the Daredevils skipper and his team found relief in victory's embrace.
Delhi Daredevils: D. Warner c Vinay b Steyn 33 (13b, 3x4, 2x6), V. Sehwag c Kohli b Vinay 12 (11b, 2x4), A.B. De Villiers (run out) 45 (35b, 3x4), D. Karthik (run out) 17 (19b, 1x4), K. Jadhav (not out) 50 (29b, 5x4, 2x6), A. McDonald (not out) 18 (12b, 1x4, 1x6); Extras (lb-1, w-7): 8. Total (for four wickets in 20 overs): 183.
Fall of wickets: 1-44, 2-58, 3-101, 4-134.
Royal Challengers Bangalore bowling: Praveen 4-0-45-0, Steyn 4-0-42-1, Kallis 4-0-36-0, Vinay 4-0-29-1, Anil 4-0-30-0.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: M. Pandey b McDonald 39 (29b, 4x4, 1x6), J. Kallis b Mishra 27 (29b, 3x4), R. Uthappa c Karthik b Mishra 15 (10b, 1x4, 1x6), R. Dravid (run out) 1 (1b), E. Morgan (run out) 17 (13b, 2x4), V. Kohli (not out) 38 (23b, 4x4, 1x6), M. Boucher c Sehwag b Sangwan 2 (3b), Vinay (run out) 2 (2b), Praveen c De Villiers b Yadav 0 (1b), D. Steyn b McDonald 8 (9b, 1x4), A. Kumble (not out) 1 (1b); Extras (lb-11, nb-1, w-4): 16. Total (for nine wickets in 20 overs): 167.
Fall of wickets: 1-71, 2-85, 3-86, 4-90, 5-120, 6-123, 7-135, 8-137, 9-165.
Delhi Daredevils bowling: Nannes 4-0-31-1, Yadav 4-0-27-1, Sangwan 4-0-32-1, Mishra 4-0-23-2, McDonald 4-0-42-2.