Little known Valthaty plays a blinder to win it for KXIP

Little known Valthaty plays a blinder to win it for KXIP

Little known Valthaty plays a blinder to win it for KXIP

Stunner: Kings XI Punjab’s Paul Valthaty celebrates his ton against CSK on Wednesday. APValthaty who has no first-class experience and till date has played only one List A match for Mumbai way back in 2006 hit 19 boundaries and two sixes as KXIP chased an improbable 189 needed for victory with five balls to spare.

Earlier, Adam Gilchrist elected to field and CSK made 188 for four courtesy a smashing 74 off only 43 balls by opener Murali Vijay and a useful 66 by S Badrinath and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s little cameo that fetched him 43 off only 20 balls.

The day however belonged to 27-year old Valthaty who had played for India colts during the early part of 2002 before an eye injury kept him out of cricket. Having played a couple of matches for Rajasthan Royals in an earlier edition with scant success, Valthaty has certainly shot into limelight like the lesser known players like Manish Pandey, Swapnil Asnodkar and Manpreet Singh Gony had done in the earlier editions.

His century came off only 52 deliveries and it was an exhibition of clean hitting. Everything came from the meat of the blade. Also he showed that he can play the pull-shot to good effect when Tim Southee banged one short.

Valthaty, who had featured in just 12 T20s before with a highest score of 70, made a difficult total look easy to achieve.

The Indian captain used as many as seven bowlers to defend the total, but Valthaty ensured that he stayed till the end to accomplish the target. Chennai bowlers including off spinner R Ashwin, Sri Lankan spinner Suraj Randiv, medium pacers Tim Southee and Albie Morkel came in for some harsh treatment from the batsman who hit a flurry off boundaries in the initial overs as his skipper Adam Gilchrist was a mere spectator at the other end.

Winning smile: Kings XI Punjab’s co-owner Preity Zinta is over the moon after her team’s win on Wednesday. AFPAlong with his skipper, Valthaty added 61 runs in 5.5 overs where the normally brutal Australian contributed only 19. He holed out in the deep to Suraj Randiv off Albie Morkel’s bowling. With Shaun Marsh joining him, Valthaty never let the momentum slip away adding another 39 runs before Marsh was run-out due to a mix-up while going for the second run.

With the score at 136 for two, suddenly CSK showed signs of making a comeback as Sunny Singh (20) was caught trying to go for an ugly hoick and southpaw Abhishek Nayar (0) soon followed adjudged leg before to Tim Southee.

But Dinesh Kaarthick (21 not out) batted sensibly during their unbroken 57-run partnership. It was Kaarthick who finished the proceedings with a huge six off left-arm spinner Shadab Jakati.

For CSK was their ploy of opening the bowling with Ravichandran Ashwin unfortunately didn’t work as the offie went for 37 runs in his four wicketless overs. Southee fared no better giving away 33 from four while Morkel took some stick giving away 38 from his three overs. The normally effective Scott Styris didn’t get another over after giving away 13 in his first over.


CHENNAI SUPER KINGS: Anirudha lbw Praveen 0, Vijay st Gilchrist b Chawla 74, Raina c Valthaty b Kumar 0, Badrinath (not out) 66, MS Dhoni b Harris 43, Extras: (LB-3, W-1, NB-1) 5. Total: (for 4 wickets, 20 overs) 188.
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-0, 3-124, 4-188.
Bowling: Praveen Kumar 4-1-37-2, Ryan Harris 4-0-25-1, Ryan McLaren 4-0-31-0, Piyush Chawla 3-0-33-1, Abhishek Nayar 2-0-24-0, Bhargav Bhatt 3-0-35-0.

KINGS XI PUNJAB: Paul Valthaty (not out) 120, Adam Gilchrist c Randiv b Morkel 19, Shaun Marsh (run out) 12, Sunny Singh c Jakati b Randiv 20, Abhishek Nayar lbw b Southee 0, Dinesh Kaarthick (not out) 21. Extras: (W-1) 1. Total: (for 4 wkts, 19.1 overs) 193.
Fall of wickets: 1-61, 2-100, 3-136, 4-136.
Bowling: R Ashwin 4-0-37-0, Tim Southee 4-0-33-1, Morne Morkel 3-0-38-1, Suraj Randiv 4-0-32-1, Scott Styris 1-0-13-0, Shadab Jakati 2.1-0-28-0, Suresh Raina 1-0-12-0.