IPL: Pune outwit Punjab by 22 runs

All-rounder Steven Smith scored a 12-ball cameo of 25 runs and later effected two crucial run-outs as Pune Warriors defeated Kings XI Punjab by 22 runs here at the newly-built Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium yesterday.

T20 posterboy: Steven Smith plays a shot during his cameo at Subrata Roy Stadium yesterday Pics/Suresh KK

Smith (aged 22), starred for Pune again after his 39-run blitzkrieg against Mumbai Indians on Friday. In pursuit of 167, Adam Gilchrist’s Punjab were restricted to 144-8. Smith’s electrifying fielding sent back both Punjab openers — Paul Valthaty (1) and skipper Gilchrist (6) — in quick succession. Punjab never recovered from the blows.

Earlier, Marlon Samuels (46) and Robin Uthappa (40) shared an 81-run stand to help Pune score a healthy 166 for six. The third-wicket stand between Samuels and Uthappa helped the hosts recover from a poor start as they had lost both the openers inside the first five overs.

Pune captain Sourav Ganguly celebrates Punjab skipper Adam Gilchrist’s dismissal with Steven Smith yesterday. Pic/AFP

Both were dismissed by paceman Harmeet Singh, who was Punjab’s best bowler with a three-wicket haul for just 24 runs. Smith (25) and Manish Pandey (12) played some massive shots towards the end as Pune extracted 35 runs in the last two overs, with 27 coming off the penultimate over when Bipul Sharma was hit thrice out of the park. Smith’s cameo comprised three sixes.  

Brief scores
Pune Warriors 166-6 in 20 overs (Marlon Samuels 46, Robin Uthappa 40; Harmeet Singh 3-24) defeated
Kings XI Punjab: 144-8 in 20 overs (Mandeep Singh 24, Abhishek Nayar 24; Rahul Sharma 2-34) 

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