Punjab v Bangalore, IPL 2013, Mohali May 6, 2013

Miller magic leaves RCB stunned


Kings XI Punjab 194 for 4 (Miller 101*) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 190 for 3 (Gayle 61, Pujara 51) by six wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

David Miller became the fourth centurion of this edition of the IPL, as he single-handedly kept Kings XI Punjab in contention for a place in the play-offs. Miller's 38-ball century resurrected Kings XI from 64 for 4 and was chiefly responsible for the 99-run blaze off the last five overs of the chase. It ensured his side pulled off a grand coup against a team studded with superstars.

Royal Challengers Bangalore would not have expected this Kings XI, especially after posting the tournament's fifth-highest score. The Royal Challengers innings was built on the shoulders of Chris Gayle - who went past the fifty mark for the first time since his whirlwind 175 against Pune Warriors and reclaimed the orange cap - and the fit-again Cheteshwar Pujara, and was given legs by AB de Villiers' cameo at the end.

Kings XI responded with only a spine in Miller. He proved it remains the most important component of the human body and can be totally self-sustaining if needs be. Miller's father would have been a proud man, if he was watching in Durban. He gave his son an important piece of advice when he was growing up and tonight he followed it to the letter."If it's in the V, it's in the tree and if it's in the arc, it's out of the park," Miller senior said.

Against an attack that continued to offer him length, Miller had both those options and took full advantage. His innings was a masterclass in hitting straight, although not all his shots found the boundary. He top-edged one attempt when he was on 42. Virat Kohli spilled the skier which proved match-changing. The next over confirmed it, as Miller took 26 off RP Singh to begin the assault. He started by dispatching a half-volley over long-off and ending with a cut over point to display his ability in hitting to other areas of the ground as well.

Miller went on to pick the slower ball with ease and targeted wicket area as well, bringing up the 100 partnership with Rajagopal Sathish with a six off a short-ball. Sathish had only scored 11 at that point and was happy to play a bit-part role until the end.

Sathish managed 14 runs off Gayle's over and then dutifully gave Miller the strike to end the match. With three runs to get - it was only the 18th over - and Miller on 95, he needed a big hit to reach a century and he duly sent a length ball over the sightscreen to bring up his milestone in characteristic fashion.

Fittingly, it came off Gayle who had himself showed intent in the other half of the match but had to be a spectator this time. Gayle started well, despite being peppered with short balls from the Kings XI attack. Praveen Kumar and Parvinder Awana did not have the pace to test Gayle on the back foot and he had Pujara as an ideal foil. When Gayle was bowled, Pujara went on to record his first half-century in the format in typically classy fashion. His only ungainly shot came when he charged Manpreet Gony and played on.

Kings XI clawed back but ran into de Villiers at the end of the innings. His cheeky defiance began with a flyswat through midwicket and he innovated with the sweep shot and square cut to take Royal Challengers to a total they would have been satisfied with.

Having reduced Kings XI to 64 for 4 at the halfway stage, with David Hussey among those dismissed, Royal Challengers would have been confident of victory. But the other David was still at the crease and it is his name Royal Challengers will remember after tonight.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • shivam on May 8, 2013, 6:31 GMT

    it was really an incredible knock by the ''KILLER MILLER''.the way he timed the bat sweetly from the middle of the bat was a joy to watch.this knock i think was the best knock in all IPL while chasing and even better than the whirlwind yusuf pathan knock of 100 from 37 balls while playing for rajasthan because he wasn't able to reach the finish line.the way miller literally murdered the ball would induce shivers down the spine of any bowling attack.being a punjab fan,i think we can sneak through and attack the marquee teams offguard.

  • Dummy4 on May 7, 2013, 16:02 GMT

    Best of Miller's knock was his straight & clean hitting... no slogging, no switch hits, no cross bats... he stole the show from Gayle... for a while... His avg. is highest, (over 100) among the purple cap contenders....

  • Slick on May 7, 2013, 14:23 GMT

    Really spectacular hitting by Miller. He has shown in past how well he can hit the ball. This time he played an unbelievable innings to keep his team in contention.

    But look at the bowling and fielding of RCB that day. Utterly disappointing. Three times they had chance to catch Miller. Twice they did not attempt to catch him. The last chance fell through Kohli's hands and hit him on the face. RP Singh's over that got Miller started was really poor bowling display. RCB really need to do something with their bowling.

  • Sharky on May 7, 2013, 10:09 GMT

    Wow, this was a great match of 20/20 cricket. It is one of the best IPL and 20/20 games I've seen so far. Very spectacular! Gayle & AB played unbelievably brilliant. Pujara (although still a bit slow) also came to the party. And David Miller just showed us the patience and brutal attack he learned from his Legendary Natal Coach, Lance Klusener, from back home.

  • Prafulla on May 7, 2013, 10:02 GMT

    These kind of batting displays keep cricket alive. Now its time to remove bowling restrictions. Let spectators see the best bowling for a longer duration. And keep pathetic commentators, who eulogise negative or cowardly batting, away from the mike. Coaches need to throw away their old manuals. Long live cricket, a batsmen's game as per rules, where good and courageous batting is always on display.

  • Shalin on May 7, 2013, 9:52 GMT

    Purjara cost RCB the game with his slow scoring, delaying the entry of AB.

  • SAJJAD on May 7, 2013, 9:17 GMT

    RCB should go with correct combination.. They should bring in agharwal for opening... An Virat captionship is not as expected he should finish off RP Shing in middle overs. keep vinay and rampul for last 5 overs....

  • Vinod on May 7, 2013, 8:56 GMT

    RCB can never be champions with this bowling attack. look at the names. does anyone inspire confidence? v kumar. rp singh. rampaul. karthik. m muralitharan. all these players barring rampual are past their sell-by date. RCB must invest in bowlers.

  • Thyagarajan on May 7, 2013, 8:54 GMT

    This is that stage of the tournament when it is time for the underdogs to spoil the party of the upperdogs. Last year, DC blew RCB out of the tournament (but it also helped CSK to be blown into the playoffs). KXIP, PWI and DD will have their hands full spoiling several more such parties. Game on or rather tournament on!

  • Vivekanand on May 7, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    RCB finding themselves in familiar territory?? RCB batting and scoring most runs time and agan and their bowler not able to defend it..happens season after season... Bangalore has crumbled often while defending big totals... The picture depicting kohli getting whacked on his faces sums it up for me.. calls for shutting your mouth and start playin cricket without bothering abt wat the crowd says or does... Kohli was left scratchin his head...kohli was clueless...and if thats wat our future skipper is goin to look like...sorry to say..BCCI is investing in the wrong person...he is the best batsman we have right now, but not a good leader on the match...Gayle and ABD must be riling as ot how often wud they keep scoring buckets of runs and then the bowlers letting everything go... RCB needs bowlers Each team has at least one class bowler DD-Morkel,Yadav SRH-Steyn,Mishra CSK- Nannes, Ashwin MI-Malinga,Johnson KKR-Narine PWI-Bhuvi RR-Faulkner