New Delhi, April 27 (IANS) Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith smashed quick-fire half-centuries as Gujarat Lions posted 172/6 in their Indian Premier League (IPL) tie against Delhi Daredevils at the FerozeShah Kotla Stadium here on Wednesday evening.
McCullum plundered 60 runs off a mere 36 balls while Smith raced to 53 off 30 as the duo put together an opening partnership of 112 runs off just 63 deliveries to give the Lions’ innings a flying start.
At one stage, the Lions seemed to be heading for a total of around 200 runs. But a remarkable batting collapse that saw Gujarat lose six wickets in the space of just 30 runs broke the scoring momentum.
Leg-spinner Imran Tahir played a crucial role in the Delhi bowlers’ fightback with excellent figures of 3/24 in his four overs. South Africa pacer Chris Morris returned a fairly economical 2/35 while his compatriot Jean-Paul Duminy (1/4) bagged a wicket in the only over he bowled.
Smith was finally dismissed when he was trapped leg before by Imran Tahir with one that kept straight after pitching. The West Indies batsman played for the turn, only to see the ball hit him on the pads right on middle and leg.
McCullum followed his opening partner back to the pavilion in the very next over thanks to some strange shot selection. Faced with a slowish full toss from Chris Morris that kept slightly high, the Kiwi veteran attempted a wild cross-batted swing that was neither accurate nor well timed only to lose his stumps.
Morris struck another crucial blow off the last ball of the same over when he got Gujarat captain Suresh Raina with a well directed short pitched delivery. Ravindra Jadeja then fell to Duminy when he misjudged the bounce of one that was slightly wide of off-stump.
Tahir then dismissed Ishan Kishan and Dinesh Karthick off successive deliveries to plunge Gujarat into further trouble. James Faulkner attempted a late fight back with a 13-ball 22 to help the visitors to a competitive total.
Gujarat Lions 172/6 in 20 overs (Brendon McCullum 60, Dwayne Smith 53; Imran Tahir 3/24, Chris Morris 2/35) vs Delhi Daredevils.