Wednesday, February 21, 2024

KP rules as Delhi beat Deccan

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New Delhi: Kevin Pietersen produced a blistering unbeaten 103 to almost single-handedly steer Delhi Daredevils to a five-wicket victory over Deccan Chargers in an Indian Premier league match here on Thursday.

The lanky Pietersen unleashed an array of breathtaking shots as he took the responsibility after his team was struggling at 23 for three to overhaul the target of 158 with five balls to spare at the Feroz Shah Kotla here.

During his sustained onslaught that saw him record his first century and highest score in Twenty20 format, Pietersen slammed a staggering nine sixes and six fours in his 64-ball knock. The star England batsman was, however, dropped thrice and he ensured that Deccan paid the price for their sloppy fielding.

This was the Daredevils’ fourth win from five matches in even as Deccan suffered their fourth defeat on the trot.

Pietersen finished the match in style, smashing Ankit Sharma over his head for six, which also brought up his century, the second of this edition of IPL.

The highlight of Pietersen’s innings was the three successive sixes off Jean-Paul Duminy and the one against leg-spinner Amit Mishra, which was probably the biggest ever at this venue.

Bowling from the Delhi Gate end, Mishra was smashed straight down the ground by Pietersen, with the ball landing on the top tier of the old pavilion. As the ball disappeared, Sehwag, sitting on the dugout with his team-mates, was seen smiling.

Before that, one of the sixes against Duminy went 98 metres. And moments later, Steyn was hit over long-off for a maximum. Pietersen’s onslaught started after Mishra was introduced into the attack, and there was no looking back after that.

In pursuit of 158, Daredevils lost Naman Ojha as the batsman’s poor run of form continued. Skipper Virender Sehwag, after hitting Veer Pratap Singh straight down the wicket for a boundary, was dismissed by Dale Steyn. (PTI)

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