Kallis, Uthappa star in Royal Challengers thumping victory (Lead)

May 4th, 2009 - 2:00 am ICT by IANS  

Sachin Tendulkar Johannesburg, May 4 (IANS) Jacques Kallis and Robin Uthappa slammed commanding half-centuries as Bangalore Royal Challengers recorded their third straight win with a clinical nine-wicket victory over Mumbai Indians at New Wanderers stadium in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match here.
Chasing a modest target of 150, Royal Challengers were never in trouble with Kallis (69 off 59 balls) and Uthappa (66 off 42 balls) forging an unbeaten 126 run partnership after the fall of Wasim Jaffer to see the team through with 11 balls to spare.

Royal Challengers, who were languishing at the bottom of table, thus turned the table on its head, climbing to fourth place after Sunday’s victory and pushing Mumbai Indians to sixth spot.

It was a crushing performance by Royal Challengers, who started the tournament with a huge win over defending champions Rajasthan Royals before they slumped to four successive losses.

Royal Challengers bowled well with little-known South African all-rounder Dillon du Preez (3-32) doing the star turn. Mumbai recovered from 23 for three through Sanath Jayasuriya (52) Dwayne Bravo (50 not out) and Abhishek Nayar (29 not out).

While chasing, Mumbai Indians lost opener Jaffer cheaply, but from there on Kallis and Uthappa dictated terms.

Kallis, who had not been in best of touch, sprang to life with some clean strikes.

The veteran South African started with two fours of Zaheer in the first over and maintained the tempo throughout.

Uthappa too, scored his first big innings in IPL with eight fours and two sixes.

Such was the domination of the duo that express fast Lasith Malinga was also not spared. He was dispatched for 17 runs in one over with Kallis hitting two sixes and Uthappa one four.

Earlier, Royal Challengers got the best of start with Praveen Kumar’s maiden over to Jayasuriya.

Sachin Tendulkar struck Kumar for two fours, one a classic punch off the backfoot.

Preez then had Tendulkar and Ajinakya Rahane caught in slip off successive balls.

Tendulkar gave a thick outside edge to lone slip Rahul Dravid while Uthappa pouched Rahane’s catch as Preez ended his first over in IPL as double-wicket maiden.

Duminy, who had been the cornerstone of Mumbai Indian’s batting, was out to a innocuous delivery as he tried to pull Preez.

Jayausiruya, who got a reprieve when Roelof van der Merwe could not spot his mishit in the deep, took his time in the middle before picking Preez for a four and a six.

After the recovery led by Jaysuriya, Bravo and Nayar slammed 48 runs off the last three overs to lift their side to a competitive total.

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