Klinger leads Redbacks to semi-finals
Michael Klinger hit his third successive half-century as the South Australia Redbacks became the first team to qualify for the Champions League Twenty20 semi-finals with an eight-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore at Kingsmead. Specialcricket Updated: Sep 18, 2010 00:49 IST
Michael Klinger hit his third successive half-century as the South Australia Redbacks became the first team to qualify for the Champions League Twenty semi-finals with an eight-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore at Kingsmead on Friday.
Redbacks captain Klinger hit 69 not out and shared a second successive century opening partnership with Daniel Harris (57) as the Australian side cruised to victory with nine balls to spare after bowling out Bangalore for 154.
With three wins in three matches, the Redbacks are sure of a place in the last four, worth a minimum of 500,000 dollars in prize money.
"I'm super-proud of the boys on Friday," said Klinger. "It was a good all-round performance."
The result meant that only one of Bangalore and fellow Indian Premier League giants Mumbai Indians can reach the knock-out phase - and they could yet be upstaged by host nation team the Highveld Lions.
All three teams have won one match in Group B.
Bangalore, who were without South African all-rounder Jacques Kallis because of a back injury, made a bad start when they lost two wickets in the first eight balls of their innings.
Ross Taylor looked in dazzling form before Klinger brought back strike bowler Shaun Tait in the ninth over. His bold move paid off as Taylor was caught behind for 46 off 28 balls.
Bangalore captain Anil Kumble admitted: "Ross Taylor's wicket was critical."
Bangalore slumped to 76 for five but Dillon du Preez hit a breezy 46 in a sixth wicket stand of 58 with Cameron White (25).
The Indian side suffered another collapse, culminating in their last three wickets falling to medium-pacer Daniel Christian for only two runs in the last over.
Kumble said the defeat meant that Sunday's match against Mumbai at the same venue was critical.
"It is a must-win game. Hopefully Jacques Kallis will be fit."