A B de Villiers and Muttiah Muralitharan starred with the bat and ball respectively as Royal Challengers Bangalore posted a 20-run victory over Delhi Daredevils to start their campaign in the fifth edition of Indian Premier League on a winning note in Bangalore on Saturday.
Chasing 158 for victory, the Daredevils were restricted to 137 for seven by last year's runners-up who were served well by Muralitharan's three for 25, after De Villiers set it up with a blazing 64 off 42 balls.
De Villiers hit six fours and two sixes in an innings that gave Bangalore the platform.
The start of Daredevils' innings was nothing less than eventful at the Chinnaswamy Stadium.
The wily Muttiah Muralitharan was at his best taking three wickets for 25 against Delhi. Pic/AFP
Delhi were off to a flyer with Aaron Finch (25 off 24) hitting Zaheer Khan for three boundaries through the off-side in the very first over before skipper Virender Sehwag offered a simple catch to Cheteshwar Pujara at covers off an innocuous Zaheer delivery.
Naman Ojha (33 off 26) lofted R Vinay Kumar for a huge six over deep square-leg that went 79 metres, to accumulate 10 runs from the second over.
There was a lull after that as Zaheer and Vinay pulled things back with some tight bowling, which saw Bangalore concede no more than eight runs.
Ojha broke the shackles by flaying Zaheer past point for a much-needed boundary and then clobbered the pacer over the mid-on fielder for another four.
The run-rate slipped again after the introduction of spinners, with skipper Daniel Vettori and Muralitharan bowling well in tandem.
It didn't take Muralitharan long to provide the hosts a breakthrough as Ojha was caught at slip by Virat Kohli .
Two overs later, the Sri Lankan legend struck again, having Finch trapped in front of the wicket.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 157 for eight in 20 overs (A B de Villiers 64 not out, Andrew McDonald 30; Doug Bracewell 3/32, Morne Morkel 2/30).
Delhi Daredevils: 137 for 7 in 20 overs (Naman Ojha 33, Aaron Finch 25; Muttiah Muralitharan 3/25, Andrew McDonald 1/11).