van der Merwe's single gear
The single gear
Roelof van der Merwe always loves going for his shots. Two deliveries into his innings he tried to muscle the ball over mid-off for six. He mistimed it badly but survived as Nicky Boje couldn't take a tough tumbling catch after running back to long-off. Did van der Merwe show a measure of caution after that? Nope. Off the very next ball, he tried the shot again, this time getting enough behind it to clear the rope.
van der Merwe was constructing a typically entertaining innings, powering to 32 off 15 deliveries with consecutive boundaries in the sixth over. The next delivery, he miscued towards midwicket. As soon as he played the stroke, he knew he was going to be dismissed and slammed the bat on to the turf in frustration. He proceeded to whack his pads with his bat a couple of times as he stormed off towards the dug-out, still muttering to himself and angrily taking off his gloves.
Jos Buttler had a forgettable start to his Champions League Twenty20 campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore, dropping Chris Gayle early and struggling to 4 off 12 deliveries when Somerset were chasing the tallest target of the competition. Today, he showed a glimpse of why he is so highly rated in England, with a momentum-injecting innings. The highlight was a monster hit over long-off, which landed on the roof of the Chinnaswamy Stadium.
The second take
With the chase becoming increasingly tense, Johan Botha chipped the second ball of the 15th over towards long-off. Arul Suppiah had to run back from mid-off to collect it; he positioned himself under the ball but misjudged it slightly and could only get his fingertips to it as it fell behind him. The bowler Steve Kirby cursed and did the double-teapot. His mood improved considerably three deliveries later when Botha gave Suppiah another chance at long-off. Suppiah accepted this time and hurled the ball in the air in relief.
Somerset's attempts at direct-hits were off target against Royal Challengers, a problem they had today as well. In the 12th over, Kelly Smuts pushed the ball towards extra cover and was stuck in the middle after some confused calling between him and his brother Jon-Jon. Alfonso Thomas swooped in on the ball, had time to balance himself, and several stumps to aim at but his throw to the non-striker's end missed, and Kelly survived.
Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo