Kolkata Knight Riders 192-5 (Bisla 89) beat
Chennai Super Kings 190-3 by 5 wickets
Indian Premier League 2012 Final, Chennai
Kolkata Knight Riders clinched their maiden Indian Premier League title by beating reigning champions Chennai Super Kings by five wickets in a high-scoring final.
An innings of 89 in 48 balls from Manvinder Bisla helped them overhaul a stiff target of 191 to win the game with two balls to spare at Chennai's home ground.
Suresh Raina had earlier scored an explosive 73 in 38 balls as the home side raced to an imposing 190 for three.
Kolkata needed nine to win from the final over and it was Manoj Tiwary who hit the winning runs off Dwayne Bravo as they became the fourth different team - after twice winners Chennai as well as Rajasthan Royals and Deccan Chargers - to win the title.
On a slow, but true batting track, MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to bat first. Murali Vijay and Mike Hussey once again gave them a pulsating start. They put on 87 runs for the first wicket, threatening to run away with the match just like they did against Delhi Daredevils.
Vijay was again the aggressor, scoring 42 runs off 32 balls, with four fours and one six. They were separated in the 11th over, when Suresh Raina joined Hussey at the crease.
It was the beginning of another big partnership, another 73 runs coming for the second wicket. These runs came off only
41 balls, during which Hussey completed his half century. He scored a solid 54 off 43 balls, including four fours and two sixes.
Raina though carried on, given company by Dhoni as the two played some hard-hitting shots. The former was exceptionally harsh on the bowlers, coming good in the knock-out stage after a mediocre tournament. He smacked 73 off only 38 balls, with three hits to the fence and five over it. Dhoni remained unbeaten on 14 off 9 balls, with two fours, even as Raina was out off the last ball of the innings. Chennai finished with 190 for three, a seemingly tall order for an occasion such as a tournament final.
Kolkata Knight Riders got off to the worst start as possible, when Ben Hilfenhaus bowled Gautam Gambhir for only two runs. With their in-form batsman gone, it came down to Jacques Kallis and Manvinder Bisla to do a repairing job while keeping their hopes alive.
And that is what happened, as Bisla played a blinder of an innings. He came into the side by default as Lakhsmipathy Balaji pulled his hamstring in the first knock-out match and could not recover in time, meaning Brendon McCullum had to be rested.
He scored a chanceless 89 off only 48 balls, not taking any undue risks, while smacking eight fours and five sixes. His innings kept Kolkata in the hunt as in partnership with Kallis, 136 runs came forth for the second wicket, that too in only 82 balls. Kallis himself went on to complete his half-century, scoring 69 runs off 49 balls, steering them to an improbable win. He hit seven fours and one six, going on even as Bisla fell in the 15th over.
Kolkata then lost their way as Laxmi Ratan Shukla and Yusuf Pathan departed in search of quick runs. When Kallis was out in the 18th over, the score was 175 for five with another 16 runs needed off 7 balls. But Hilfenhaus fumbled, bowling a full-toss no-ball and then conceding a four to Shakib Al Hasan off the last ball as the equation came down to nine runs off six balls.
Then off the third and fourth balls of the final over bowled by Dwayne Bravo, Manoj Tiwary smacked two brilliantly placed boundaries to give Kolkata Knight Riders their maiden IPL title, which is by all means quite a popular one.
© Cricket World 2012