Yuvraj Singh grabbed a hat-trick to bowl Kings XI Punjab to a vital one-run victory over Deccan Chargers in an Indian Premier League match on Sunday.
The left-arm spinner finished with 3-13 off four overs as Punjab restricted Deccan to 133/8 in a thrilling last-over finish after posting 134/7 to keep alive their hopes of qualifying for the semi-finals.
Deccan needed 11 to win off the last over, but left-arm seamer Irfan Pathan conceded only nine to build on man-of-the-match Yuvraj’s effort. Pathan also claimed two wickets, including that of Rohit Sharma.
Sharma sustained Deccan’s hopes with a quickfire 42 before being bowled. He smashed three sixes and as many fours in his 26-ball knock.
There was no hint of collapse after Deccan reached 73/2 chasing a modest target, but Yuvraj dismissed Herschelle Gibbs, Andrew Symonds and Venugopal Rao off successive balls.
Yuvraj removed South African Gibbs (26) with the last ball of his second over, with Piyush Chawla taking a superb diving catch at point.
He had Australian Symonds (25) stumped with the first ball of his next over and then bowled Indian Venugopal Rao to complete his second hat-trick of the tournament, having earlier achieved the feat against Bangalore.
India paceman Rudra Pratap Singh earlier played a key role in restricting Punjab, finishing with 3-26 off four overs to become the tournament’s leading wicket-taker with 19 in 13 matches.
Singh also got the prize wicket of Sri Lankan Kumar Sangakkara (56) just when the batsman looked like boosting the innings in the closing overs.