SPORT

Rohit’s heroics takes Chargers through

OVER THE MOON: A Deccan Chargers team-mate is joy unbound as he greets Rohit Sharma (right), who took the team to a thrilling win.

OVER THE MOON: A Deccan Chargers team-mate is joy unbound as he greets Rohit Sharma (right), who took the team to a thrilling win.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: AFP

Johannesburg: Deccan Chargers piled on the misery for Kolkata Knight Riders with a thrilling six-wicket win at the Wanderers on Saturday.

Chasing Kolkata’s 160 for five, Deccan began its last over requiring 21 for a win. Three balls into the over, Rohit Sharma struck a brilliant, nerveless six, to leave his side needing eight from three. Mashrafe Mortaza, in his first match, then bowled a disastrous short-and-wide ball for Sharma to smash for four.

With one needed off the last ball, Sharma pulled splendidly for a six over fine-leg to bring the thrilling chase to a close. He was unbeaten on a 13-ball 32 with three fours and two sixes. Sharma’s efforts came after David Hussey’s 17-ball 43 took Kolkata to a reasonably defendable total.

Mortaza bore the brunt of Deccan skipper Adam Gilchrist in his first match. The left-hander swung powerfully in the second over for a six over deep mid-wicket and repeated the result in the next delivery.

Gilchrist’s 31-ball 43 included five fours and two sixes. He failed to get hold of a slowish delivery from Hodge and instead top-edged to Laxmi Shukla at deep-square leg. Herschelle Gibbs looked to be settling in for more when he pulled to David Hussey at deep mid-wicket off Murali Kartik.

T.S. Suman smashed Ajit Agarkar for two boundaries in the 14th over, at the end of which Deccan needed 62 off 36 balls. Kartik, who had bowled impressively to concede just 12 runs in his four overs, dropped Suman at mid-off off Ishant Sharma. The batsman managed a boundary immediately after, but was run-out courtesy a strong throw from Hodge at long-off.

With Deccan needing 45 from 22, Andrew Symonds spectacularly cleared long-on for a six off Ajit Agarkar, relieving the pressure. But soon after, Symonds departed to a throw from bowler Mortaza after Sharma’s call for a single. Sharma made up for that at the end with a brilliant final over.

Earlier on in Kolkata’s innings, David Hussey’s knock hastened proceedings for Kolkata after Sourav Ganguly and Brad Hodge struggled. Hussey made his entry in the 15th over, changing the tempo of the innings.

Kolkata was 118 for three in 18 overs when R.P. Singh came in to bowl. The left-armer bowled his second waist-high no-ball to be removed from the attack. Harmeet Singh, who bowled the remaining deliveries, was up against a man on a rampage. Hussey punished a short delivery for a boundary and followed it up with a massive blow over the bowlers head for a six.

Expensive over

The final ball of the ill-fated over was powered over long-on for half a dozen, taking the run-count to 28 runs in the over, the most expensive in the IPL so far.

SCOREBOARD

 Kolkata Knight Riders: B. McCullum c Suman b Harris 20 (18b 1x4, 1x6), S. Ganguly c Harris b Rohit 33 (41b 3x4), B. Hodge c Harmeet b Harris 48 (41b, 5x4), D. Hussey (run out) 43 (17b, 2x4, 4x6), W. Saha c Singh b Symonds 7 (3b, 1x6), M. Mortaza (not out) 2 (2b), A. Agarkar (not out) 0 (0b); Extras (b-1, lb-2, w-2, nb-2): 7; Total (for five wkts. in 20 overs): 160.

Fall of wickets: 1-27, 2-85, 3-117, 4-152, 5-158.

Deccan Chargers bowling: Harris 4-0-20-2, R.P. Singh 3.1-0-30-0, Symonds 4-0-28-1, Harmeet 3.5-0-40-0, Ojha 3-0-24-0, Rohit 2-0-15-1.

Deccan Chargers: A. Gilchrist c sub (Shukla) b Hodge 43 (31b 5x4, 2x6), H. Gibbs c Hussey b Kartik 28 (34b 3x4), T.S. Suman (run out) 31 (24b 3 x4, 1 x6), A. Symonds (run out) 18 (13b, 1x6), R. Sharma (not out) 32 (13b, 3x4, 2x6), Y. Venugopal Rao (not out) 7 (7b); Extras (b-1, lb-2, w-2, nb-2): 7; Total (for four wkts in 20 overs): 166.

Fall of wickets: 1-68, 2-85, 3-116, 4-128.

Kolkata Knight Riders bowling: Ishant 4-0-23-0, Mortaza 4-0-58-0, Kartik 4-0-12-1, Hodge 3-0-23-1, Agarkar 4-0-41-0, Hussey 1-0-6-0.

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