Rajastha Royals 126-3 (Shane Watson 90*, Ashok Menaria 18, Wayne Parnell 1-12) beat Pune Warriors 125-6 (Anustup Majumdar 30, Steven Smith 18, Shaun Tait 3-13) by seven wickets.
Shane Watson toyed with the bowling of Pune Warriors as the tiny looking target was achieved easily and Rajasthan Royals clinched the match comprehensively.
Pune Warriors scored 125 runs for the loss of six wickets in 20 overs and Rajasthan Royals hammered 126 with seven wickets in hand.
Shane Watson (Rajasthan Royals) was declared ‘Player of the match’ for his crushing knock of 90 from just 51 balls.
The 52nd match of the Indian Premier League 2012 was played at Subrata Roy, Sahara Stadium, Pune, on Tuesday, May 8, 2012.
Earlier, Sourav Ganguly, the captain of Pune Warriors, won the toss and elected to bat at his home ground while opening the innings with Michael Clarke. They had a reasonable start by gathering 22 runs in the first four overs as Ganguly got a chance on the fifth ball of the next over when dropped by Shaun Tait at deep fine leg off Shane Watson at 12. He was unable to capitalize on the chance and lost his wicket in the sixth over for 14 runs after providing an opening stand of 30.
Clarke departed five runs later for 16 as Robin Uthappa , Anustup Majumdar tried to establish the innings and the latter opened up with a couple of sixes in the 11th over. He followed it with a four in the next over but was clean bowled by Johan Botha for 30 off 20 balls with 2 sixes and a four. The third wicket fell at 77 in 11.3 overs when the bowlers of Rajasthan Royals took command of the game and the batsmen were unable to leave any impression.
Steven Smith remained unbeaten for 18 as Pune Warriors engineered 125 runs with four wickets in hand at the end of the stipulated 20 overs.
Shaun Tait was the major destructor with three wickets as Johan Botha and Stuart Binny claimed one wicket each.
Rajasthan Royals suffered an early blow by losing their first wicket for just four runs as Shane Watson joined in with the skipper, Rahul Dravid. Watson banged in by grasping 16 runs in the third over of Murali Kartik with a couple of lofty sixes and one four as the pace was set by both batsmen thereon. The score was enhanced to 49 in six overs when Dravid was caught by Clarke at mid off on the bowling of Wayne Parnell for 14.
That became a one man show later on as Shane Watson murdered the bowling of Pune Warriors at his will with a little assistance from the other end. He assembled 15 runs in the 9th over with two fours and completed his fifty on the last ball with a huge six over the backward square leg. He continued with the assault and the hundred of the innings was attained in the 13th over as a couple of wickets fell from the other end while the chase was on.
Watson dispatched a four on the second ball of the 17th over, demonstrated a chanceless unbeaten innings of 90 off mere 51 deliveries with 4 towering sixes and 10 well timed fours as the target was achieved by smashing 126 runs for the loss of just three wickets.
Wayne Parnell, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Michael Clarke were the only successful bowlers with one wicket each.
Points scored by both teams at the end of the 52nd match of the IPL 2012:
Rajasthan Royals – 12 from 12 games at a net run rate of +0.265.
Pune Warriors – 8 from 13 games at a net run rate of -0.238.