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Watson helps Rajasthan beat Delhi
May 11, 2008 23:39 IST
Last Updated: May 12, 2008 10:01 IST
Shane Watson scored a blistering 74 to ensure Rajasthan Royals a three-wicket win over Delhi Daredevils at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium in Jaipur on Sunday.
The win, Rajasthan's seventh from nine matches, almost guarenteed them a semi-final berth and marked a remarkable turnaround after their opening match drubbing at the hands of Delhi.
The latter, on the other hand, suffered their fourth defeat in eight matches.
Chasing 157 to win, Rajasthan made 159 for seven and won with five balls to spare.
Watson's 40-ball knock contained four boundaries and five huge sixes and was his third half-century in the ongoing competition.
The Australian was involved in a 71-run third-wicket partnership with South African Graeme Smith [Images] (24), a partnership that steadied the Rajasthan ship after two freak run outs early on and laid the foundation for yet another win despite some late wobbles.
Earlier, a brilliant bowling supported by charged up fielding helped Rajasthan Royals restrict Delhi Daredevils to a modest total of 156 for seven.
The visitors, put in to bat, failed to build partnerships and paid the price as they could not put enough runs on the board and handed a tough job to their bowlers to defend a modest total.
Host skipper Shane Warne [Images] used all his bowlers effectively and made life difficult for visiting batsmen until Farveez Maharoof hit a blistering 39 towards the end.
Maharoof top scored for the Delhi team with the help of two boundaries and four sixes, all coming in Shane Warne's overs.
The Sri Lankan also shared a crucial 54-run partnership with compatriot Tilakratne Dilshan (18) to help his team past the 150-run mark.
Maharoof hit Warne for 26 runs in the penultimate over with the help of four sixes, lifting the spirits of a dejected Delhi team.
Dmitri Mascarenhas (2 for 29) and Siddharth Trivedi (2 for 28) were the most successful bowlers for the hosts.
Mascarenhas, who made his debut in the tournament, bowled well and used slow balls to good effects as it did help in containing dangerous Virender Sehwag [Images].
Shane Watson too on the other end, bowled in tandem as the pair gave away just 29 runs in the first four overs with fielders complimenting their bowlers well.
As the pressure mounted to score quick runs, Sehwag (17) perished to Watson when he drove him uppishly only to find Mohammad Kaif at backward point.
On down Shikar Dhawan (3) did not last long as he started his walk back to pavilion seven balls later after a terrible mix up with Gautam Gambhir [Images] (31) resulted in his run out.
Gambhir then survived a run out chance when Munaf Patel [Images] failed to hit stumps when the Delhi opener tried to steal a run in rival skipper's over.
The left-handed batsman however could not use the chance and was dismissed by Siddharth Trivedi when he tried to loft the ball over the covers but only managed an inside edge on his stumps.