Steyn and co. too hot for Lions

2010-09-22 00:00

The Lions are no longer, as they were hustled out of the Champions League T20 last night by a feisty Royal Challengers Bangalore outfit.

The six-wicket margin was a clear indication of the gulf in class, but the Lions were always up against it after losing wickets too regularly.

“We tried our best, but we were about 20 runs short,” skipper Alviro Petersen said.

“I don’t think our success should be measured by where we finished, but rather by the obstacles we crossed.”

Certainly, the Lions have punched above their weight here, but they didn’t have enough in the tank to prevent the Challengers becoming the first IPL franchise to make it to the last four of the Champions League.

The Challengers’ much-vaunted attack delivered again, with Anil Kumble stepping up this time to provide the throttling effect.

Petersen had played with a free spirit until he was bowled by Kumble for 45, and it was from there that the Lions started to whimper.

Vaughn van Jaarsveld was needlessly run out just when he was getting things going again.

The burly left-hander had been involved in a fiery exchange with Dale Steyn, who was suitably impressed by Van Jaarsveld’s literal slip.

From there, the Lions did not have the power in the middle order to rack up the imposing target they needed.

Bangalore had lost all-rounder Jacques Kallis to an injury that will see him miss the rest of the tournament, but their other stars came to the party.

Kumble’s spell yielded just 13 runs, as Neil McKenzie and company struggled to get him away.

It was left to Robbie Frylinck to finish with a flourish, as he clubbed a 9-ball 22 to give his side a sniff.

The Bangalore chase started in a real hurry, with Manish Pandey (44) and Rahul Dravid (33) spanking 53 for the first wicket.

By the time Dravid was bowled by Aaron Phangiso, the Challengers were on their way. Even another silly run out — involving Virat Kohli and Robin Uthappa — did little to derail the victory charge.

Kohli, promoted up the order after his display against Mumbai in Durban, finished off the job this time.

His 49 not out off 29 balls was timed just right, and it was he and Cameron White who steered the ship home with an over to spare.

“It was nice to be there to the end, and we won this time,” man-of-the match Kohli said.

He even joked about running out his buddy Uthappa.

“I messed up, and apologised to him. I also reminded him of the time he ran Kevin Pietersen out in the IPL. But no one was laughing that time,” Kohli cheekily added.

The Challengers now return to Durban, where they will play in Friday’s first semi-final. Tonight’s clash between the Warriors and the Chennai Superkings will go a long way to deciding who the Challengers face.

If the Warriors win, they will top the group and face the Challengers.

However, if Chennai succeed, they will top the group due to their superior run-rate, and set up an all-IPL tussle in Durban on Heritage Day.


Lions innings

J Vandiar c Uthappa b Vinay Kumar11

A Petersen b Kumble45

R Cameron c Uthappa b Vinay Kumar0

V van Jaarsveld run out (du Preez/Steyn)24

N McKenzie run out (Kohli/Uthappa)39

Z de Bruyn c Kohli b du Preez7

R Frylinck not out22

T Tsolekile not out5

Extras (lb 2, w 4)6

Total (6 wickets; 20 overs)159

Fall of wickets: 1-29, 2-29, 3-73, 4-100, 5-128, 6-140

Bowling: P Kumar 3 0 34 0 (1w), R Vinay Kumar 3 0 23 2(1w), A Kumble 4 0 13 1, DW Steyn 4 0 31 0 (1w), D du Preez 3 0 32 1, V Kohli 3 0 24 0 (1w).

Royal Challengers Bangalore innings

M Pandey c O’Reilly b Cameron44

R Dravid b Phangiso33

V Kohli not out49

R Taylor c Petersen b Deacon5

CL White not out19

Extras (lb 1, w 1, nb 1)3

Total (4 wickets; 19 overs)160

Fall of wickets: 1-53, 2-85, 3-98, 4-112.

Bowling: W Deacon 4 0 21 1, E O’Reilly 4 0 41 0 (1w),

R Frylinck 3 0 22 0, R Cameron 4 0 35 1(1nb), A Phangiso 3 0 27 1, Z de Bruyn 1 0 13 0.

Royal Challengers won by six wickets.

Player of the match: V Kohli (Royal Challengers).

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