Royals outlast Pune

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Pace-setting half-centuries from openers Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Dravid ensured the Rajasthan Royals a hard-fought five-wicket victory over the Pune Warriors in Sunday's Indian Premier League clash at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur.

Pace-setting half-centuries from openers Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Dravid ensured the Rajasthan Royals a hard-fought five-wicket victory over the Pune Warriors in Sunday's Indian Premier League clash at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur.

All-rounder Stuart Binny hit two sixes and the same number of fours to steer the Royals past the Warriors' total of 178 for four from the penultimate ball of the match.

Rajasthan, who now move up into the top four in the table, had been given the perfect start in their run chase by skipper Dravid (58) and Rahane (67) putting on 98 for the first wicket.

However, Australian duo Shane Watson and Brad Hodge both fell to seamer Wayne Parnell, who also had Sanju Samson caught for 10 to finish with three for 27.

The South African left-armer couldn't deny Binny in the final over though, as Pune suffered a seventh successive loss in this season's competition.

They had given themselves a chance of breaking their barren run with a solid batting performance that was built around an opening partnership of 97.

Aaron Finch made 45 before becoming the first wicket to fall, while Robin Uthappa top-scored with 54 from 41 balls.

Mitchell Marsh weighed in with 35 not out in the closing stages, the Australian all-rounder hitting three sixes and two fours, but his efforts weren't enough to stop the Royals winning a sixth straight home fixture.

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