Symonds leads Deccan Chargers to IPL title

Johannesburg, May 25: Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds led the Deccan Chargers to a six-run victory over the Bangalore Royal Challengers in the Indian Premier League Twenty20 final at the Wanderers.

Symonds, who has not been included in the Australia team to defend the Ashes in England this year, boosted the Chargers’ innings with 33 from 21 balls.

South Africa one-day opener Herschelle Gibbs batted through the innings to score 53 not out in the Chargers’ 143 for six.

Promising South African all-rounder Roelof van der Merwe (32) and New Zealander Ross Taylor (27) mounted a spirited response before Symonds took two wickets with two balls and Bangalore finished on 137 for nine.

Van der Merwe struck three sixes from 21 balls and Taylor was also in threatening form before Symonds had Taylor caught hooking by Venugopal Rao at deep square-leg in the 15th over and wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist pulled off a brilliant leg-side stumping to dismiss Virat Kohli (7) off the next delivery.

Bangalore went into the final over needing 15 runs to win, but Rudra Pratap Singh, the leading wicket-taker in the competition, frustrated their efforts with his canny variations.

Bangalore captain Anil Kumble scythed through the early batting, bowling Gilchrist for a duck in the first over and also removing Symonds. The former India leg-spinner claimed four for 16.