IPL-7: Fastest Ton Brings Back Sehwag Memories
By Express News Service | Published: 30th May 2014 10:07 PM |
MUMBAI: Special! Sensational! Colossal! Breathtaking! The adjectives kept flashing relentlessly on the electronic screen at the Wankhede Stadium as Virender Sehwag seemed to turn back the clock while notching up a 58-ball 122 to put King’s XI Punjab in strong position in the second qualifier against Chennai Super Kings on Friday.
>> Gallery: Sehwag Spoils Dhoni's Party
Sehwag, bespectacled these days, flayed the opposition bowlers to all parts of the ground to score the fastest century of this IPL, off just 50 balls. His knock, laced with eight sixes and 12 fours, was also the highest surpassing Mumbai Indians’ Lendl Simmons 100. CSK have a mountain to climb if they are to make a record sixth final, as King’s XI amassed 226 for 6.
After Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the toss and asked the Punjab side to bat first, Manan Vohra and Sehwag were kept in check in the first three overs with Ashish Nehra and Ishwar Pandey finding some swing. But the fourth over from Pandey changed the script as Vohra, with two sixes, and Sehwag, with two fours, took him on to pick up 24 runs. It was all Sehwag after that as the veteran raced to 50 off just 21 balls. Apart from his trademark flourish through the off-side he also brought out the upper cut, late cut, drives, pulls and flicks to unravel CSK's best laid out plans.
More than the CSK fielders, the ball boys and the spectators seemed to be doing more of the fetching as boundaries flowed in numbers like the taxies on the Mumbai streets.
The six powerplay overs were indeed power packed for King's XI as the openers picked up 70 runs.
Nehra was smashed for three consecutive fours in the fifth and R Ashwin was welcomed with a six into the sight screen. After carting Ravindra Jadeja in similar fashion, he creamed Nehra for two straight sixes in the 11th over.
In between, his young partner Vohra was dismissed for 34 after a stand of 110 in just 64 balls.
One drop Glenn Maxwell watched from the other end as Sehwag dished out a more silken kind of hitting compared to the sledgehammer style of the big Aussie. Maxwell, after swinging Ashwin for a six, was caught in the deep, bringing the left-handed David Miller into the game at 148 for 2.
The third-wicket partnership realized 63 in 31 balls before Sehwag’s stunning innings ended in the hands of Du Plessis.