Vandiar leads Lions to a victory against MI
Local team Lions beat Mumbai Indians by nine runs in the opening match of the Champions League twenty20 tournament played at New Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg on Friday. Subhash Rajta reports.cricket Updated: Sep 11, 2010 02:05 IST
One couldn't have asked for a better contest to kick off a tournament.
It was virtually a fight between a David and a Goliath — little known Highveld Lions and the star-studded Mumbai Indians. This one too was fought as fiercely as the one from the story books, and the result too was the same. Goliath was once again felled by David. The Lions didn't let themselves get bogged down by the reputation of their rivals, and shocked everyone, including themselves perhaps, by registering a thrilling nine-run victory over the Mumbai Indians.
They had their noses ahead when they put impressive 186-run total on the board, setting the Mumbai Indians a very stiff target. What's most impressive about them was their positive approach. They looked to score all the time and didn't hesitate to step out against the likes of Zaheer, McLaren and Malinga.
The star performer for them was left-handed opener Jonathan Vandiar, who scored stroke-filled 71, studded with three massive sixes and four boundaries, and Neil Mckenzie, who came up with a rearguard action to smash a quickfire half-century (56 off 30 balls).
Mumbai Indians started off in great fashion with Sachin Tendulkar and Shikhar Dhawan putting on 83-run for the first wicket. Sachin looked in great touch and kept the team in the hunt with a fine half century. But once he was dismissed, the Lions tightened their control on the match. For the Mumbai Indians, the loss is going to hurt a lot.
Brief score: Highveld Lions 186 for 5 (Vandiar 71, McKenzie 56*, Malinga 3-33) beat Mumbai Indians 177/6 (Tendulkar 69, Burger 2-33) by 9 runs.