Sehwag the Scorchers' scourge
Virender Sehwag’s fifty saw Delhi Daredevils move towards the Champions League T20 semi-finals by eliminating Indian Premier League champions Kolkata Knight Riders and opponents Perth Scorchers.
Sehwag’s 52 from 44 balls, featuring four fours and a six, put the Daredevils on course for a three-wicket win with as many deliveries remaining at Newlands in Cape Town.
The flamboyant opening batsman was fortunate to get that many, being dropped twice in a Nathan Coulter-Nile over - the latter over the third-man rope by Nathan Rimmington to herald his half-century.
Rimmington somewhat made amends in the next by removing Irfan Pathan and Sehwag but, once Coulter-Nile had Naman Ojha caught behind, Pawan Negi and Ajit Agarkar scored the 18 required from 14 balls.
Sehwag had cheaply lost his fellow top-order batsmen, including Kevin Pietersen to Michael Beer. In contrast, Perth relied on 39 from opener Shaun Marsh, Simon Katich’s 34 and 20 from Mitchell Marsh to reach their modest 121 for five. Morne Morkel was effective with 3-19 from four overs.
Delhi lead Group A going into Tuesday’s last round of games as Kolkata hammered Titans by 99 runs in today’s second match, also at Newlands.
Lakshmipathy Balaji’s four wickets saw Titans, who had won the toss, slip from 51 for one to 89 all out in 16.4 overs. Balaji began the decline with two wickets in as many balls and ended with 4-19 from four overs. Opener Jacques Rudolph top-scored for Titans with 25.
The Knight Riders’ commanding 188 for five was built on top-order contributions and Debabrata Das’ rapid 43 not out from 19 balls, including six fours and two maximums. Manvinder Bisla had hit 27 from 14 deliveries and opening partner Gautam Gambhir made 44 with Brendon McCullum falling for 36 in between.
On Tuesday Titans face Delhi, with a two-point gap between them, after Auckland Aces, who are two points further back, meet Perth. Both contests are at Centurion.