De Villiers, Ali keep Bangalore alive in IPL

Duo scores half-centuries to help hosts register 14-run win against Hyderabad

AB de Villiers and Moeen Ali’s astonishing batting performances helped Royal Challengers Bangalore in registering a 14-run win in the 51st match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in Bengaluru on Thursday.

The day started with the visitor’s captain Kane Williamson winning the toss and opting to field first. His decision seemed a correct one as the home side lost wicketkeeper-batsman Parthiv Patel and captain Virat Kohli with the score of 38 in the fifth over.

But a 107-run partnership for the third-wicket between De Villiers and Ali pushed Bangalore to a mammoth score of 218 for the loss of six wickets in their allotted 20 overs.

De Villiers finished the innings with the top score of 69 off 39 balls with the help of 12 fours and one six, whereas Ali scored 65 off 34 balls with the help of two fours and six sixes. New Zealand all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme also made a valuable contribution of 40 off 17 balls with the help of one four and four sixes.

For the visitors, Afghanistan leg-spinner was the best bowler on the show as he claimed figures of three for 27 in his four overs.

In reply, Hyderabad had a solid start but could not manage to keep pace with the run-rate of nearly 11 from the beginning. However, a 135-run partnership for the third-wicket between Williamson and Manish Pandey kept the team alive in the contest and brought the equation down to 20 needed off the last over.

But young Mohammed Siraj put a great over for the home side to seal a 14-run win and kept Bangalore’s hopes alive of making it to the next round. Williamson finished as the top scorer for Hyderabad with a stunning 81 off 42 balls with the help of seven fours and five sixes, whereas Pandey scored unbeaten 62 off 38 balls with the help of seven fours and two sixes.

For Bangalore, leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, off-spinner Ali and pacer Siraj claimed a wicket each.

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