Kolkata End Four-Match Losing Run

Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir looked in top form as he helped the Kolkata Knight Riders clinch a much-needed win
©REUTERS / Action Images

Kolkata Knight Riders 161-2 (Gambhir 69) beat
Delhi Daredevils 
160-5 by eight wickets
Indian Premier League 2014, Delhi

The Kolkata Knight Riders snapped their four-match losing run in the 2014 Indian Premier League with an eight-wicket victory over the Delhi Daredevils at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi.

They rode on a half-century by local lad Gautam Gambhir to overcome the hosts’ total of 160 for five.

This win lifts Kolkata to fourth spot in the points table, with six points from eight games, taking them above the Royal Challengers Bangalore on net run-rate, albeit the latter have one game in hand. Delhi meanwhile sink to the bottom of the table with four points from eight games.

Chasing a par score of 161, Kolkata got off to a great start for the second time in two matches. It was thanks to their now in-form openers Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir, who stroked their way to a 50-run stand in just the sixth over.

Delhi were running out of ideas as not a single straightforward chance was presented by the two batsmen who went on a further rampage and raised the 100-run mark in the 11th over.

In doing so, Gambhir scored his second consecutive half-century of the tournament, reaching the mark off 39 balls, with four fours and one six.

He scored 69 runs in total, off 56 balls hitting one more four and a six. He was the second and last wicket to depart in the 18th over.

Meanwhile Uthappa wasn’t lucky enough to be rewarded with his third fifty of the season, but his 47 runs off 34 balls, with five fours and one six, showcased the brilliant form he has experienced ever since returning to India.

He was the first one to go in the 12th over, and after Gambhir’s departure, Manish Pandey (23 not out off 14 balls, two fours) and Jacques Kallis (10 not out) made sure there were no unnecessary hiccups as they breached the finish line with 10 balls to spare.

Earlier, the Delhi Daredevils won the toss and elected to bat first. Their start did not get off in the way they would have intended with Quinton de Kock (10) falling cheaply in the third over.

It got worse when Kevin Pietersen (6) was run out three overs later going for a non-existent run. Once again it left a lot for their middle order to do, but Dinesh Karthik was equal to the task as he put on 35 runs for the third wicket with Murali Vijay.

Vijay scored 24 runs off 20 balls, with two fours and one six, while Karthik scored 36 runs off 22 balls, hitting four fours and one six.

They took Delhi past the 50-run mark in the eighth over and it looked as if they might be able to resurrect the Daredevils’ hopes. But it was not the case as they were both dismissed in a span of 18 balls leaving the innings in the lurch.

The 100-run mark came up in the 15th over but Laxmi Ratan Shukla (10) was once again wasted by the team management as he fell soon afterwards.

JP Duminy and Kedhar Jadhav once again stepped up thereafter to help Delhi cross the 150-run mark in the final over. In doing so they put up 55 runs for the unbroken sixth-wicket partnership. Duminy finished on 40 not out off 28 balls, with three sixes, while Jadhav was unbeaten on 26 runs off 15 balls, with three fours and one six.

Jacques Kallis (1-38), Umesh Yadav (1-26), Shakib Al Hasan (1-13) and Sunil Narine (1-38) each took a wicket apiece for the Knight Riders.

© Cricket World 2014