IPL 6: Sunrisers reach the pinnacle with a scrappy win over Kings XI

A flurry of wickets at the end saw Kings XI Punjab gift away their decent position to Sunrisers Hyderabad while Thisara Perera's firing innings sealed it for the home side.

updated: April 20, 2013 01:04 IST
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There are days when excellence takes a backseat and two teams do their best to lose a game of cricket. For Sunrisers Hyderabad, who were within one win of topping the points table, and Kings XI Punjab, who were yet to give their Pepsi Indian Premier League Season VI campaign any concrete shape, this was one such game. In a game that was scrappy at best, and much worse for the best part, Hyderabad had enough firepower to chase down 123. (Match in pics)

When Adam Gilchrist, leading Punjab, won the toss and chose to bat, he would have hoped that a change in personal fortunes would rub off onto his team. For a time, it seemed that the long blade was going to cut deep. Gilchrist, now almost halfway between his 41st and 42nd years, threatened to reprise his greatest hits, crashing the ball through the off side with limited footwork and lifting the ball over the on side with sublime timing. But, just as he threatened to play an impact innings, Gilchrist fell for a 25-ball 26. With Mandeep Singh, the other opener, failing to impress, and Paul Valthaty consuming 17 balls for a bumbling 6, Kings XI were sliding. (Watch Analysis: Engineer angry over Punjab's batting collapse)

When the need of the hour was a solid anchor, Kings XI got a middle-order that was long on ambition and short on pragmatism. Every batsman attempted to clear the ropes without having a clear plan and even 22 from David Hussey and a brisk 23 from the promoted Piyush Chawla only left Kings XI at 104 for 5 in the middle of the 17th over. (Stats: 'Purple' Amit Mishra emulates Lasith Malinga)

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