(The Times Of India)
Fire-breathing Ishant Sharma bowled Deccan Chargers to a sensational 55-run win over Kochi Tuskers Kerala at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium on Wednesday.
The lanky Delhi seamer picked up three wickets in his first over and added two more in his second for a final analysis of five for 12 off three overs as Kumar Sangakkara’s Chargers scored their third victory in seven matches.
Ishant Sharma’s figures are the third-best in the history of IPL. Only Royals’ Sohail Tanvir (6/14 in 2008) and Bangalore’s Anil Kumble (5/5 2009) have better figures.
When Mahela Jayawardene decided to bowl first and restricted the Chargers to 129 for seven in 20 overs, he would have nursed hopes that the Kerala side would get the momentum back after its disappointing loss to Rajasthan Royals. But Sharma had other ideas as he bowled with pace and also in the right areas to choke the Kochi batsmen on a wicket that had a lot in it for the pacers; the former Indian pacer bowled to a field of two slips and gully in his first three overs, quite unusual in a T20 match.
He became only the third bowler in IPL 4 to take five wickets in a match after Lasith Malinga and Harbhajan Singh. The Tuskers were bowled out for 74 in 16.3 overs, the lowest total in this IPL.
The Kochi procession started in the second over of the day after Dale Steyn had sent back Brendon McCullum in the first. Sharma then swung into action removing Parthiv Patel, Raiphi Vincent Gomez and Brad Hodge in the second over. Sharma then sent back Jadhav and Mahela Jayawardene to virtually win the match for his side inside the first four overs as Kochi tumbled to an almost bizarre 11 for six. And when MS Gony accounted for Thissara Perera for 22 to reduce Kochi to 47 for seven, it was all over bar the shouting.