Fri, May 11, 2012 - Page 18 News List

Gayle smashes 82 to push Bangalore up to fourth place


Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Chris Gayle plays a shot in the IPL Twenty20 cricket match against the Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday.

Photo: AFP

Chris Gayle smashed 82 not out to lead the Royal Challengers Bangalore to a nine-wicket win over the Mumbai Indians on Wednesday to top the list of run-scorers in the Indian Premier League this season.

Gayle now has 515 runs to overtake Virender Sehwag (468) after hitting six sixes and five fours in 59 balls.

Bangalore restricted Mumbai to 141-6 at Wankhede Stadium and then scored 142-1 in 18 overs.

Gayle, who was dropped on 21 by West Indies teammate Dwayne Smith off Harbhajan Singh, added 94 in an unbroken second-wicket stand with captain Virat Kohli (36 not out).

He struck three consecutive sixes off left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha and perfectly executed the pull shot off the pace bowlers.

“We knew we had to see off [Lasith] Malinga early on and then build the innings,” Gayle said. “We were expecting two overs upfront from him, but he bowled three.”

Earlier, seamer Vinay Kumar and spinner Muttiah Muralitharan came up with timely wickets after Mumbai had been sent in to bat.

Opener James Franklin (1) and Rohit Sharma (0) fell cheaply to Kumar. Franklin slashed at a delivery and was caught by Zaheer Khan at third-man, while Sharma was trapped leg before wicket three deliveries later as Mumbai were reduced to 2-2 in the second over.

Sachin Tendulkar hit three successive fours off Kumar in his -innings of 24, while Dinesh Karthik scored 44 from 39 balls to steady the innings.

Muralitharan dismissed Karthik and Smith in consecutive balls, but unbeaten cameos from West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard (21 off 13) and captain Harbhajan Singh (20 off 12) took Mumbai to a -competitive score.

Pollard scored 18 off the final over from Kumar, smashing two sixes to the square-leg boundary.

The win lifted Bangalore to fourth in the nine-team league with six wins, five losses and one no-result from 12 games. Mumbai remain third with seven wins and five losses from 12 outings.

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