IPL: Miller guides Kings XI Punjab to victory

May 07, 2013 - 2:21:18 am

David Miller of  Kings XI Punjab plays a shot during his innings of 101 not out against Royal Challengers Bangalore in their IPL match at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium, yesterday.

Punjab:  A fine unbeaten century by David Miller gave Kings XI Punjab a stunning six wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium here yesterday.

Miller struck an unbeaten 33-ball 101 as Kings XI, while chasing a target of 191, made 194 for four with 12 balls to spare.

The brutal southpaw slammed 38-ball-101 to help Punjab chase down a huge 191 with two overs to spare as Bangalore lost the high scorer by six wickets in Mohali.

Miller hit seven sixes and eight boundaries during his onslaught that left the visitors stunned even after posting a big total.

Miller shared 130-run partnership for the fifth wicket with R Sathish (27).

Kings XI Punjab were on back foot after losing early wickets after Royal Challengers Bangalore posted a massive 190/3.

They were four down for 64 in ten overs. David Hussey (13) was the fourth man to fall. He became second victim of Murali Kartik who earlier dismissed Gurkeerat Singh (20).

Punjab got off to a poor start as they were reduced to 25/2 in four overs. While Ravi Rampaul gave Punjab first blow by dismissing Shaun Marsh, Vinay Kumar got rid of Mandeep Singh.

AB de Villiers took a stunner to send back Marsh (6) at the score of 13. Mandeep scored 16 before getting caught behind.

However, Miller turned the tide in Punjab’s favour with his quick-fire knock.

Openers Chris Gayle and Cheteshwar Pujara hit contrasting half-centuries as Royal Challengers Bangalore amassed an imposing 190 for three.

Pujara, playing his first match of the season, and Gayle shared a 102-run stand to give their side a rollicking start and AB de Villers came up with a 38-run cameo off just 19 balls towards the end to propel the side to a huge score.

Gayle’s 61 came off 33 balls with nine boundaries, including three sixes, while Pujara scored 51 off 48 balls and helped himself with eight shots to the fence.

Leg-spinner Piyush Chawla was the best bowler to watch as he bowled a probing line and varied his pace superbly to trouble the batsmen. He did not get a wicket but conceded just 26 runs in his four overs.

Manpreet Gony dismissed bowled both Gayle and Pujara and the visitors lost skipper Virat Kohli (14) cheaply after that but de Villiers ensured that the good start does not go waste as he blasted his way to 38 with four fours and two sixes.

He collected 21 runs off the final over, bowled by debutant Michael Neser along with Moises Henriques.

A tentative Pujara was slow off the blocks but the marauding West Indian was his usual aggressive self. He hit gigantic sixes off Neser, as the two openers reeled off 18 runs from South African paceman’s first over.

As if the Gayle bashing was not enough, Pujara too got into the act, scoring a hat-trick of boundaries off Gony in the next over as Bangalore raced to 58 for none in six overs.

Even Gayle’s mis-hits were kissing the boundary ropes as he raced to his half-century in 27 balls.

Gony returned and was hoicked for a six by Gayle but he had his revenge when he uprooted Gayle’s stumps in the next ball. That wicket did affect the run-rate even as skipper Kohli and Pujara took the side to 133 for one in 15 overs.  AGENCIES