Royal Challengers Bangalore face an anxious wait over the fate of their spot in the semi-finals after a crushing 57-run defeat by Mumbai Indians yesterday. Chasing 192 for a win, Bangalore needed to score at least 147 to stay ahead of fifth-placed Chennai Super Kings on run-rate, but could manage just 134 for nine, damaging their chances of booking one of the three still-undecided semi- final spots, for which five teams are in contention.
This was the Royal Challengers' last game and they finish with 14 points. Delhi and Deccan, who play today, have the same number of points. Chennai are on 12 points and a win against Punjab today could see them pip Bangalore. The other side in the running, Rajasthan, needed to beat Kolkata by a huge margin last night. An unbeaten 42 (19 balls) from JP Duminy allowed Mumbai to post a total of 191 for four, with Ambati Rayudu (46 from 27) and Kieron Pollard (20 from seven) providing the fireworks in the middle of the innings.
Bangalore lost Manish Pandey and Jacques Kallis, their openers, early in the run-chase and were two for 31 in the sixth over. Mumbai should have got a third wicket in the next over, but Aditya Tare, the wicketkeeper, fumbled a stumping of Kevin Pietersen, who was on just three at the time. Harbhajan Singh, the bowler to suffer, found success in his next over when Rahul Dravid chipped to Pollard. He got KP as well, tempting the England star to mis-hit a "doosra" to long-off.
Robin Uthappa soon followed and Bangalore were 74 for five in the 12th over, and eventually finished way below expectations. "It was actually nice to get the ball in the middle of the bat again and spend some time in the middle," Duminy, who has played only four of Mumbai's 13 matches this season, said in a post-match TV interview. "I have a point to prove, so yeah it was good getting some form under the belt before the semi-finals. We didn't have the greatest of starts, but I think we pulled it back nicely in the end." The match was delayed by an hour following two low-intensity explosions outside one of the gates of the M Chinnaswamy stadium, which was packed with 40,000 spectators. The reasons for the blasts yet to be ascertained. Eight people were injured. * Compiled by Ahmed Rizvi, with agencies
Meanwhile, the Kolkata Knight Riders beat Rajasthan Royals by eight wickets in the late match at the Eden Gardens. With captain Sourav Ganguly (75 off 50 balls) leading from the front, the Knight Riders scored 133 for two in 16.1 overs after restricting the Royals to 132 for nine. Chetaswar Pujara remained not out with 45 off 38 balls as the Knights won with 3.5 overs to spare. Earlier Shane Watson(44) top scored for the Royals but the batting collapsed after his departure in the eight over. The strategic time out was taken just before that over after Rajasthan were going strong with 59 for no loss at that stage. Among the Knight Riders bowlers, Jaidev Unadkar finished with 3 for 26. Scorecard: Rajasthan Royals: SR Watson b Shukla 44 ( 26b, 7×4, 1×6) NV Ojha c Shukla b Unadkat 18 (22b, 3×4) YKPathan c Ganguly b Unadkat 8 (9b, 1×4) AJ Finch b Bond 21 (21b, 1×6) AC Voges c Kartik b Dinda 8 (7b, 1×4) AS Raut c Gayle b Unadkat 2 (4b) P Dogra b Kartik 8 (12b) FY Fazal run out (Unadkat/McCullum) 13 (13b, 1×4) SK Warne not out 3 (4b) SK Trivedi c Unadkat b Dinda 4 (2b) Kamran Khan not out 0 (0b) Extras (b-1, w-2) 3 Total (9 wickets; 20 overs) 132 Fall of wickets: 1-59, 2-69, 3-74, 4-98, 5-101, 6-103, 7-115, 8-126, 9-130 Bowling: SE Bond 4-1-20-1 (1w) AB Dinda 4-0-24-2 M Kartik 4-0-31-1 JD Unadkat 4-0 26-3 LR Shukla 4-0-30-1 Kolkata Knight Riders: SC Ganguly not out 75 (50b, (11×4 2×6) BB McCullum c Watson b Kamran Khan 6 (7b, 1×4) CH Gayle b Kamran Khan 0 (2b) CA Pujara not out 45 (38b 5×4 1×6) Extras (w 7) 7 Total (2 wickets; 161 overs) 133 (822 runs per over) Fall of wickets: 1-21, 2-22 Bowling: YK Pathan 3-0-32-0 (3w) SR Watson 3-0-17-0 Kamran Khan 2-0-13-2 (2w) SK Trivedi 2-0-16-0 SK Warne 3-0-20-0 (1w) AJ Finch 11-0-5-0 AC Voges 1-0-16-0 (1w) FY Fazal 1-0-14-0