Maritzburg Oval laps up more IPL bangs and big hits

2009-04-30 00:00

THERE were plenty of blasts, both on and off the field, as the Bangalore Royal Challengers and an Inland XI played out an entertaining Twenty20 friendly at the Oval last night, which was eventually won by seven wickets by the IPL outfit.

Not even a delay due to a faulty fuse in one of the floodlights could dampen the festive mood.

Inland, buoyed by another very good crowd, certainly played their part as they plundered 173 for 5 in their allotted overs.

Mbasa Gqadushe (27 off 14) and skipper Ross McMillan (38 off 25) set a blistering early pace, with left-handed Gqadushe smashing 22 off a startled Dillon du Preez’s over.

The ferocious pace slowed a bit in the middle overs, but most of the home batsmen chipped in, and the slightly built Kyle Nipper finished with a flourish as he belted one of the bigger sixes ever seen at the picturesque Oval.

With 174 needed, the Royal Challengers were always going to go in with all guns blazing, but no none foresaw such stunning early assault.

With 50 up off just 23 balls, Robin Uthappa showed his true class. Along with the equally dashing Rohit Bishnoi, they added 92 inside 8 overs to leave the crowd contemplating an early night.

But Inland fought back manfully, with the spinners dragging the rate back somewhat, Uthappa eventually falling for 50 off just 26 balls, while Bishnoi smashed 41 off 21 deliveries.

Australian all-rounder Cameron White, who was skipper for the day, helped himself to an undefeated 31 as he saw his side home in the 19th over.

Gqadushe’s cavalier start earned him a rather charitable man-of-the match from the visiting management, and the crowd was treated to a ferocious fireworks display after the presentation.

SCORES IN BRIEF:

INLAND: 173 FOR 5 ( R. McMillan 38, M Gqadushe 27, M Hulett 24 not out, U Patel 2/24)

BANGALORE: 174 FOR 3 ( R. Uthappa 50, R Bishnoi 41, C White 31 not out)

Bangalore won by seven wickets.

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