Bangalore blunt Punjab

The Royal Challengers Bangalore edged out the Kings XI Punjab by eight runs.

Punjab looked set to chase the tame target of 146 with consummate ease when openers Yuvraj Singh and Karan Goel took their score to 70 off nine overs. However, a dramatic collapse saw Simon Katich, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene contributed just 39 runs between them.

This put enormous pressure on the lower order and ultimately none of the Punjab sluggers were able to perform a rescue act.

Earlier an inspired spell by Yusuf Abdulla (4-36) helped restrict Bangalore to a total his side would have felt confident of chasing.

The South African seamer made inroads into the top order early on, before returning to take the important wicket of Roelof van der Merwe, who had smashed three fours and three sixes en route to 35 off 19 deliveries. His knock and a watchful innings from Jacques Kallis (27) helped avoid a complete blowout.

However, majority of the credit for Bangalore being halted must go to Yuvraj Singh, who took a sensational hat-trick with the prized wickets of Kallis, Robin Uthappa and Mark Boucher.

While they will be pleased with the win, Bangalore will lament the fact that most of their premier batters got starts but failed to kick on. A better side would have punished them.

But Punjab are an ordinary unit and slumped to defeat, when a victory was theirs until a dramatic capitulation. Preveen Kumar, Van der Merwe and Anil Kumble all suffocated the Kings and picked up two wickets each.

Bangalore 145/9 - Roelof van der Merwe 35, Jacques Kallis 27, Yusuf Abdulla 4-36
Punjab 137/7 - Yuvraj Singh 50, Karan Goel 20, Anil Kumble 2-25, Preveen Kumar 2-27

Bangalore won by eight runs

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