Rajasthan Royals ride on Rahane’s century to outclass Challengers (Roundup)

April 16th, 2012 - 1:51 am ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, April 16 (IANS) A brilliant unbeaten century by Ajinkya Rahane helped Rajasthan Royals humiliate Royal Challengers Bangalore by 59 runs in the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the jam-packed Chinnaswamy stadium here Sunday night.

Rahane’s maiden century, 103 off 60 balls, guided the 2008 champions to a huge 195 for two in 20 overs.

Chasing an imposing target of 196 on home turf, Challengers struggled all along to make 136 for all out in 19.5 overs, as its top and middle order collapsed to a magical spell of Siddharth Trivedi (4-25), Pankaj Singh (2-18) and Amit Singh (2-43).

Trivedi claimed all the four important wickets of Virat Kohli (22), AB de Villiers (6), Saurabh Tiwary (17) and skipper Daniel Vettori (1) to wreck the Royal Challengers batting.

Barring opener Mayank Agarwal, who made a brisk 34 in 21 balls with three fours and three huge sixes, none of the Royal Challengers batsmen showed any grit or determination to chase the target as they were choked by a superb bowling and tight fielding by the Royals.

Earlier, opting to bat after their captain Rahul Dravid won the toss, Royals hit 195 for the loss of just two wickets, with other opener Rahane scoring the tournament’s first century and remaining not out at 103 of 60 balls, which included 12 magnificent fours and five mighty sixes.

Though Royals made a modest start by posting 60 runs in the first 10 overs, Owais Shah joined Rahane after Dravid (25) departed to hit seamers and spinners of Royal Challengers alike all over the ground to accelerate the score to 183 in eight overs, with a record 121-second wicket partnership. Shah hit 60 in 26 balls with five fours and five sixes.

Barring Vettori and Zaheer Khan, who shared one wicket each, none of the other bowlers, including spin wizard Muthaiah Muralitharan could separate either Rahane or Shah from carrying on the assault.

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