Irfan Pathan's blitzkrieg went in vain as Andrew Symonds produced an all-round display to guide Deccan Chargers to a thrilling six run victory over Kings XI Punjab in an Indian Premier League match in Cuttack on Friday .
Symonds first scored a spakling 38-ball 53 and then followed it up with the crucial wicket of Mahela Jayawardene (14 off 9) and two important catches off Ravi Bopara (38 off 32) and Irfan Pathan to restrict Kings XI's to 164 for eight.
For Kings XI, Pathan played a gem of an innings with a blistering 60 off just 26 balls to singlehandedly bring the Punjab side inches closer towards the target from nowehere.
Apart from Pathan, Bopara and Jayawardene, only one Kings XI batsmen -- S Sreesanth (12 off 5) managed double figures.
Vaas (2/27) was the pick of the bowlers for Deccan, while Symonds (1/22), RP Singh, Pragyan Ojha and Sharma all accounted for a victim each.
Earlier sent into bat, Symonds notched up back-to-back half centuries in the event while skipper Adam Gilchrist made a quick-fire 12-ball 33 to help Deccan post 170 for seven on the board.
With this victory, Deccan has returned to the top half of the points table with two wins out of three matches, while Kings XI have slumped to their third consecutive defeat in the Twenty20 tournament.
It was a dismal start to Kings XI's run chase as they lost two wickets, including that of their skipper Sangakkara inside the third over.
Last match half centurion Manvinder Bisla was run out for a duck as T Suman came up with a direct hit. Four balls later Vaas castled Sangakkara's timbers with a beautiful off-cutter.
As if that was not enough, Yuvraj Singh's (4) poor show with the bat continued as he ballooned a Vaas delivery to give a simple catch to Gibbs at cover point.
Symonds then sent packing a dangerous-looking Jayawardene and after Bopara's dismissal, victory was just a formality for the Hyderabad side.
But Pathan ensured that it was not an easy win for the Hyderabad side as he used his long handle to great effect and hit three fours and five sixes to take Kings XI very close to the elusive win.
However, it was not to be as needing 19 runs off the last over, Pathan fell to Jaskaran Singh, caught in the deep by Symonds.
Sreesanth came up with three boundaries in the last over but it was not enough to take Kings XI to their first victory in IPL III.
Earlier apart from Gilchrist and Symonds, Herschelle Gibbs made a run-a-ball 23, while T Suman (26 off 22) and Chaminda Vaas (16 off 10) provided the necessary impetus towards the end to take Deccan to the competitive score.
Yuvraj Singh (2/21) was pick of the Kings XI bowlers while Irfan Pathan, Shalabh Srivastava and Bipul Sharma all picked up a wicket each.
Gilchrist was at his destructive best from the onset. He greeted Sreesanth with two fours and two sixes to pile up 24 runs of the second over. PTI