(The Times Of India)
Pune Warriors India started their campaign in style as they thrashed Kings XI Punjab by seven wickets with 41 balls to spare in their Indian Premier League debut at the DY Patil Stadium on Sunday.
Warriors skipper Yuvraj Singh (21 not out) and Robin Uthappa (22 not out) added match-winning unbeaten 45-run for the fourth wicket to help the debutantes register an easy win.
Yuvraj continued his form of the World Cup as he hit a six and two fours in his 15-ball cameo whereas Uthappa smashed two huge sixes and a four in his quick 14-ball innings.
Chasing 113-run target, Pune Warriors lost Jesse Ryder (31) and Mithun Manhas (35) quickly after they added 60-run stand for the second wicket against Kings XI Punjab.
Ryan McLaren dismissed dangerman Ryder in the ninth over after the southpaw smashed six boundaries in his quick-fire 17-ball 31 runs innings.
Abhishek Nayar struck in the eighth over to halt the Warriors run-chase as he broke the crucial 60-run partnership between Manhas and Ryder.
Manhas hit a six and five fours in his 32-ball 35 innings before succumbing to Nayar.
Pune Warriors lost Graeme Smith on the first ball as pacer Praveen Kumar gave Kings XI Punjab an early breakthrough.
Earlier, Shrikant Wagh (3-16) and Alfonso Thomas (2-27) helped Pune Warriors India restrict Kings XI Punjab to 112/8 in their IPL debut match.
Pune pacers dismissed Punjab top-orders in no time to reduce them to 9/4 in 3.3 overs. Alfonso Thomas started Pune’s debut innings on happy note with Adam Gilchrist’s wicket in the first over.
Thomas’ attack partner Shrikant Wagh soon joined the party as he scalped Shuan Marsh in the next over. Both pacers shared two wickets each in their opening spells.
Punjab failed to recover much from there on till Ryan McLaren played a gem of an inning to bail them out at the end.
McLaren hit a six and six fours in his 43-ball 51 runs innings and helped Kings XI post a decent 113-run target for the Yuvraj-led newcomers.
Pune Warriors started their IPL journey aggressively as they dismissed four Kings XI wickets in four overs in Navi Mumbai.
Earlier, Kings XI Punjab skipper Adam Gilchrist won the toss and decided to bat against Pune Warriors India in Navi Mumbai.
The teams (from):
Pune Warriors: Yuvraj Singh (capt), M Kartik, M Manhas, MD Mishra, WD Parnell, JD Ryder, R Sharma, GC Smith, AC Thomas, RV Uthappa (wk), SB Wagh
Kings XI Punjab: Adam Gilchrist (capt/wk), BA Bhatt, PP Chawla, KD Karthik, P Kumar, R McLaren, SE Marsh, AM Nayar, NJ Rimmington, Sunny Singh, PC Valthaty.