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Page last updated at 21:26 GMT, Friday, 24 April 2009 22:26 UK

Bopara outshines Pietersen in IPL

Ravi Bopara
Bopara's 84 runs came off 59 deliveries at Kingsmead

Kevin Pietersen was outshone by England team-mate Ravi Bopara as the King's XI Punjab beat Bangalore in the IPL.

Man-of-the-match Bopara hit 84 runs as his team racked up a seven-wicket win, while Pietersen was out for a duck for the second time in four innings.

"We missed out because Ravi played like a superstar," admitted the Challengers skipper, after watching Bopara hit five sixes and four fours in Durban.

"It's not nice losing, but we've got to try to turn it around."

Having set a mediocre target of 168, Pietersen's Challengers were helpless as Bopara led Punjab's charge to victory.

It was Bangalore's third straight IPL defeat, but Pietersen - the league's joint most expensive player - said: "It's a long competition, and we just need to get winning.

"It's a habit, and as soon as you start winning everything starts to become okay."

Bopara formed a patient partnership with Karan Goel before exploding into life alongside captain Yuvraj Singh.

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"We needed to knock it around in middle because (Anil) Kumble's bowled really well in the series and we didn't want to lose a wicket to him," he said.

"So we waited as late as possible and just went for the boom at the end.

"I knew the wicket was skidding along quite nicely and obviously with the short boundary we were always in with a shout.

"Everybody around me was smashing it and I was playing the singles game.

"But I said my turn's going to come - when there's nobody else about I'm going to get my turn to smack it everywhere."

Yuvraj, who hit a six to secure victory an over early, said Bopara had made all the difference.

"Ravi was outstanding, he kept the momentum going and scored when we needed," he said.



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see also
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20 Apr 09 |  Cricket
IPL action begins in South Africa
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IPL photos
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Bopara glad to grab second chance
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Bopara thankful for IPL release
09 Feb 09 |  Essex
England players top IPL auction
06 Feb 09 |  Cricket


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