England Legends spinner Monty Panesar hogged the limelight on Tuesday evening as he bowled a devastating spell and spun a web around the Indian batmen. He dismantled the Indian top-order by taking the crucial wickets of Sachin Tendulkar (9), Mohammad Kaif (1) and Yuvraj Singh (22).
Set a daunting target of 188, Indian Legends’ openers would have hoped to give their team a quick start. Virender Sehwag made his intentions clear from the very first ball as he charged Monty down and tried to go over the on-side. However, he could only get a thick inside-edge towards square leg for a single. That first ball set the tone for the rest of the innings as Indian batsmen failed to get going.
In his 2nd over, Monty Panesar cleaned up Mohammad Kaif while on the last ball of the over, the spinner scalped the prized wicket of Sachin Tendulkar. Tendulkar charged down the track but was beaten by the turn and Mustard whipped off the bails. The Raipur crowd went silent as they took in Master Blaster’s dismissal. Coincidentally, Sachin was also the maiden Test scalp of Panesar during the Nagpur Test between India and England in 2006.
Yuvraj Singh was the next batsman to become Panesar’s victim. Yuvi looked in good knock but the all-rounder lost his wicket to Panesar as he tried to hit a big shot. He got a massive leading edge and offered a simple catch to Maddy at backward point. Irfan Pathan(61) and Gony(35) fought bravely with quickfire knocks but could not take India over the line.
Pietersen smashes fastest half-century of tournament
Earlier, it was the Kevin Pietersen show as his quickfire blitz led England Legends to 188-7. Pietersen (75 off 37) smashed the fastest fifty of the tournament in just 18 balls. The opener hit six fours and five sixes during his free-flowing knock and was well-supported by Darren Maddy (29).
It was a near perfect performance from the England Legends on Tuesday night and they will hope to continue their winning run when they next take on South Africa Legends on Thursday.