A distraught Pune Warriors India watched the Deccan Chargers waltz to victory by 6 wickets in the IPL-4 match here on Monday.
Earlier, Pune Warriors India put up a listless batting display, losing three wickets in seven balls midway, to be restricted to a modest 136 for nine by Deccan Chargers.
Put in to bat by Chargers skipper Kumar Sangakkara, the Warriors started on a promising note with a 31-run opening partnership between Manish Pandey (23) and Jesse Ryder (13) before suffering a dramatic slide at the D Y Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.
The sudden slump, which started off the last ball of the fourth over and continued till the fifth ball of the seventh, saw the Warriors - who had a slim chance of advancing to the play-offs going into the clash -- losing five wickets for 14 runs, three of them at the same score of 45.
Leg-spinner Amit Mishra, who has returned to the Indian team for the tour of the West Indies, accounted for two wickets in as many balls in his maiden first over, after Dale Steyn, Dan Christian and Pragyan Ojha took the first three wickets. Skipper Yuvraj Singh (23) kept the innings going, but he too departed after getting a good start in the 15th over, leaving the Warriors at an unimpressive 92 for seven.
Mitchell Marsh, who top-scored with a quick-fire 37 in 28 balls with three sixes and a four, helped the Warriors add 35 runs in the company of Wayne Parnell to give the Warriors total a more healthy look.
Mishra picked up two for 26 while Christian and Ojha too claimed a brace of wickets for 13 and 35 runs respectively. Opener Ryder, who smacked a six off JP Duminy in the first over, was the first to depart when he was caught brilliantly at cover point by Dwaraka Ravi Teja off Steyn.
He faced 14 balls and struck one four and a six. Former India captain Sourav Ganguly, who scored an unbeaten 32 when the teams played at Hyderabad six days ago,was out for a duck as he put up a tame catch to Ojha at mid-off off Christian to leave the Warriors at 35 for two.
Ten runs later, three wickets fell in a jiffy at the same score.
Pandey was the first of the trio of batsmen to depart in the space of seven balls when he leaned back and chopped left-arm spinner Ojha on to his stumps. He hit three fours and a six.
Sangakkara introduced Mishra in the eighth over and the soon after he was given the ball the leggie packed off Robin Uthappa and Mithun Manhas, for a first ball duck, to be on a hat-trick that was prevented by Callum Ferguson.
Uthappa tried to flick and gave an easy return catch while Manhas was foxed by a googly which he failed to read and was clean bowled to leave the Warriors at a sorry-looking 45 for five.
Warriors captain Yuvraj Singh added 28 runs with Ferguson to put the innings back on track.
But Duminy spelt Ferguson's doom as he hit a tame return catch to the bowler to depart at team score 73. Yuvraj kept the scoreboard moving by slog-sweeping Ojha for a six and then sweeping Duminy for a four.
But he too fell in trying to up the tempo, top edging a Christian delivery to Sangakkara behind the stumps. His knock contained a six and three fours.
Marsh, who hoisted Christian for a six over mid-wicket and Mishra straight over the head for another, pushed the score past 100 in Wayne Parnell's company.
Marsh then hit Ojha for his third six before departing bowled by the slow bowler off the second ball of the last over while Parnell, who made 16 in 15 balls with a six to boot, was run out off the last ball.