Royal Challengers Bangalore win battle royale with ease

IPL Cricket

Praveen Kumar recorded the first hat-trick of Indian Premier League 3 as a dominant Royal Challengers Bangalore mauled a sorry-looking Rajasthan Royals by 10 wickets to notch up their second consecutive win in the Twenty20 tournament here on Thursday.

Praveen (3/18) notched up the seventh hat-trick in the tournament’s history, while skipper Anil Kumble and Jacques Kallis (2/20) ably supported him from the other end to restrict the Rajasthan side under the three figure mark.

Delhi Daredevils’ Amit Mishra, Chennai Super Kings duo of L Balaji and Makhaya Ntini, Kings XI Punjab’s Yuvraj Singh (twice) and Deccan Chargers’ Rohit Sharma had achieved the feat in the previous editions of the event.

With a meager 93 to chase, in-form Kallis and young Manish Pandey bulldozed the Rajsathan bowlers to all parts of the ground from the onset to complete a facile win in just 10.4 overs to register the second biggest win in terms of balls to spare in the event’s history.

Kallis continued his good showing with the bat with a sparkling unbeaten 44 while Pandey blossomed in the South African’s company, scoring an elegant 42 innings.

Kallis’ 34-ball essay was embellished with seven boundaries, while Pandey, the first Indian to score an IPL century last season, struck as many and a six in his entertaining 30 ball innings.

With this victory, Royal Challengers have registered two wins out of three matches they have played so far, while Rajasthan Royals have slumped to their third successive defeat in the tournament.

Royal Challengers had crushed Kings XI Punjab and lost to Kolkata Knight Riders in their earlier encounters.

Earlier, Yusuf Pathan, who was reprieved twice, showed glimpses of brilliance, scoring 26 runs off 24 balls with the help of two sixes and a four, while Martyn innings’ (19 off 24) was a struggle.

Royals batting came a cropper on Thursday as after Yusuf and Martyn, only two other batsmen — Naman Ojha (16 off 18) and Michael Lumb (10 off 18) — could only manage double figures.

Brought back into the attack in the 17th over, Praveen first bowled Martyn of the second delivery of his third over, had Sumit Narwal brilliantly caught at square leg by Manish Pandey and then castled Paras Dogra of the next ball to the delight of the capacity crowd.

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