It is veterans’ show

Kumble sent the Rajasthan Royals crashing to defeat when it started the defence of its crown at Newlands while Tendulkar led the Mumbai Indians to victory over the Chennai Super Kings.

Veteran leg-spinner Anil Kumble and batting superstar Sachin Tendulkar grabbed the headlines as the Indian Premier League enjoyed a dramatic opening day.

Kumble sent the Rajasthan Royals crashing to defeat when it started the defence of its crown at Newlands while Tendulkar led the Mumbai Indians to victory over the Chennai Super Kings.

Former India skipper Kumble took five for five as the Royal Challengers Bangalore gained a crushing 75-run win as the champion was bowled out for a paltry 58, the second lowest total in the short history of Twenty20 cricket.

“It was pretty disappointing,” admitted Rajasthan captain Shane Warne. “As defending champions we expect better of ourselves. Our shot selection was poor.”

Bangalore skipper Kevin Pietersen was overjoyed with the opening win.

“The boys played fantastic cricket,” he said. “It was a great team effort and you can’t buy Anil Kumble’s experience in a shop.”

Indian batting star Rahul Dravid made a fine 66 as Bangalore recovered from losing two wickets for no runs in the first three balls of their innings.

Bangalore made 133 for eight before the Royals was bowled out for 58, with no batsman making more than 11.

England all-rounder Dimitri Mascarenhas took three for 20 but Pietersen, who made 32, and Dravid paved the way for Bangalore’s win. Dravid’s 66 came off 48 balls with eight fours and a six.

Tendulkar hit an unbeaten 59 as he led the Mumbai Indians to a 19-run win against the Chennai Super Kings.

Tendulkar’s unbeaten 59 provided the foundation for Mumbai’s 165 for seven after they were sent in on a blustery, grey day.

Former Australian opening batsman Matthew Hayden hit 44 and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni 36 for Chennai but the 2008 runners-up could only manage 146 for seven.

Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga bowled superbly to take three for 15 in four overs for Mumbai.

* * * Tendulkar not to take things for granted

Tendulkar, who scored an unbeaten 59 to script his team’s victory in the opening match said, “The start is good but it is still a long way to go. I won’t take anything for granted.”

Tendulkar, who was adjudged Man of the Match, said the initial overs were difficult for batting and lavished praise on Sanath Jayasuriya and Abhishek Nayar for adjusting well.

“When I lost the toss, I realised there was a dampness in the wicket. The first 6-7 overs were difficult and later on Abhishek Nayar came and played a terrific innings and my job basically was to just be there and play till the end and guys at the other end played their strokes,” he said.

On being asked what could be a decent total on the South African wickets, Tendulkar said anything around 150 would make a good fight.

“Looking at about 145-150 would be a decent total. Don’t look at 180 plus but if you can get into 150-160 then it could be a good total,” he said.

* * * Shot selection is the key — Dravid

Shot selection would be the key to the success of batsmen in the second edition of the IPL in South African conditions, feels Rahul Dravid, who scripted Royal Challenger Bangalore’s stunning win over Rajasthan Royals.

Dravid, adjudged Man of the Match, played a gritty 66-run knock in a pressure situation and led his team to a emphatic 75-run win.

“You got to play some good cricket shots under these conditions.

You cannot hit every ball here. Conditions were ideal for me and will help batsmen like me,” Dravid said after the match.

Dravid insisted he had no point to prove when asked about his gesture when he pointed his bat towards the pavilion after his third IPL fifty.

“Not really. I am happy with the way I batted. I was in good touch,” he said.

* * * THE SCORES

Bangalore Royal Challengers 133 for eight in 20 overs (Kevin Pietersen 32, Rahul Dravid 66, Dimitri Mascarenhas three for 20, Shane Warne two 18) beat Rajasthan Royals 58 in 15.1 overs (Praveen Kumar two for seven, Anil Kumble five for five).

Mumbai Indians 165 for seven in 20 overs (Sanath Jayasuriya 26, Sachin Tendulkar 59 not out, Shikhar Dhawan 22, Abhishek Nayar 35, Manpreet Gony two for 32) beat Chennai Super Kings 146 for seven in 20 overs (Matthew Hayden 44, Andrew Flintoff 24, Mahendra Singh Dhoni 36, Lasith Malinga three for 15, Sanath Jayasuriya two for 34).