Pune: Deccan Chargers, after setting a competitive target for Pune Warriors India, sealed their first victory of Indian Premier League's (IPL) season five after a whirlwind 78 by Cameron white and a disciplined show by their bowlers. Asked to chase 178, Pune could only manage 159 for 7 to lose the match by 18 runs.
Pune lost both their openers - Jesse Ryder and Manish Pandey - inside the 50-run mark. The dangerous Ryder fell early with the scoreboard reading just 15 and Pandey scored 21 before being bowled by Juan Theron in his first over to leave Pune struggling at 43 for 2.
Pune captain Sourav Ganguly (23) and Robin Uthappa started in a positive manner and ensured the scoreboard kept ticking. But Ganguly, who was dropped by Duminy at point off the first delivery of the 10th over by Manpreet Gony, failed to capitalise on the chance as he fell three balls later, caught by the substitute fielder Daniel Harris at short cover.
After Cameron White's 78 powered Deccan Chargers to 177, their bowlers bowled well to win the match by 18 runs.
To make matters worse, Pune also lost Uthappa (29) trying to play a fancy shot but only managing to chop onto his stumps off debutant Ashish Reddy in the 14th over, and then four balls later, Reddy accounted for a struggling Marlon Samuels, getting him caught by Kumar Sangakkara.
Steven Smith, however, was in no mood to give up without a fight and struck a few lusty blows before perishing in the 17th over. He was caught in the deep by Duminy off Theron. Mithun Manhas played a 22-run cameo towards the end, but it proved to be too little too late.
Earlier a hefty knock of 78 from just 46 balls by Cameron White, which included five sixes, powered the Deccan Chargers to a formidable total of 177 for 4. White, together with JP Duminy (26 not out), added a crucial 75 runs for the fifth wicket to take Deccan to the competitive total.
Opting to bat first, openers Parthiv Patel (24) and Shikhar Dhawan (16) ensured a quick start to the Deccan innings, smashing Ashish Nehra for three fours to pick up 16 runs off the very first over of the innings. The duo put on 39 runs off four overs for the opening stand before Dhawan fell attempting a suicidal run. Soon after, Bhuveneshwar Kumar picked up Patel, who was caught by Mithun Manhas at deep square leg.
Kumar Sangakkara was then joined by White in the middle and the duo shared 33 runs for the third wicket before Sangakkara perished when he gave spinner Rahul Sharma the charge and was bowled for 12, with Deccan slipping to 83 for 3 in the twelfth over. White, however, seemed in ominous form as he went about his business in style, notching up his first half century of the tournament in just 35 balls with the help of five boundaries and two huge sixes.
He shared a 77-run stand for the fourth wicket with JP Duminy in only 6.2 overs to propel Deccan to 158. But Marlon Samuels removed White at a pivotal stage in the 18th over when White attempted to clear the cover boundary and was caught near the ropes by Alfonso Thomas. Duminy then failed to clear the boundary ropes after White's departure, and Deccan only managed 15 runs off the final two overs but still stacked up a healthy total of 177.