Apr 292013

Brad Hodge Shane Watson

In form … Hodge (L) and Watson helped Rajasthan to a thrilling win. Source: AAP

Rajasthan Royals overhauled a target of 172 for a four-wicket victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore in Jaipur.

Sanju Samson (63), Shane Watson (41) and Brad Hodge (32) were the main contributors as the Royals got home with one ball to spare.

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The Royal Challengers had earlier posted a total of 171-6 after being invited to bat at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium.

Chris Gayle set the tone with a 16-ball 34 and there were solid knocks further down the order from AB de Villiers (21), Moises Henriques (22) and Vinay Kumar, whose 22 not out came off six balls, three of which went for six.

Australian all-rounder Watson was the Royals’ most successful bowler with 3-22.

The result moves the Royals level on 12 points with the Royal Challengers, two points behind IPL leaders Chennai Super Kings.

In the day’s other match, Rohit Sharma hit 79 not out from 39 balls as Mumbai Indians beat Kings XI Punjab by four runs.

Sharma led the Indians to a total of 174-3 after he won the toss, opener Dwayne Smith chipping in with 33 and fellow West Indian Kieron Pollard with 20 not out.

Wickets fell regularly in the Punjab reply but a breezy 34 off 18 balls from David Hussey kept them in the hunt.

South African David Miller anchored the innings thereafter, but India spinner Harbhajan Singh kept the shackles on with a spell of 3-14 from his four overs.

It proved to be a vital contribution, as Piyush Chawla made 12 including one six to take the score to 132-8, nevertheless leaving an unlikely 43 needed off 19 deliveries.

But Miller fell for 56 in the 18th over having hit five maximums in his 34-ball stay as Mumbai moved to the brink of victory.

Praveen Kumar almost had the last laugh though, smashing 24 off 15 balls including a six off the penultimate delivery, but requiring a repeat next ball he could merely spoon a catch to Sachin Tendulkar off a full toss.

Read more: http://www.skysports.com/cricket/match_report/0,,11066_14363_1,00.html

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