Kolkata Recover To Win CLT20 Opener
Kolkata Knight Riders 159-7 (Russell 58) beat
Chennai Super Kings 157-4 by three wickets
Champions League T20 Group A, Hyderabad
The Kolkata Knight Riders recovered from being 10 for three and 51 for five to chase down 158 and beat the Chennai Super Kings by three wickets in the opening game of the Champions League T20 2014.
Chennai had earlier posted 157 for four with all of their top-order batsmen making useful contributions.
With Kolkata struggling, losing five wickets in nine overs, Chennai were overwhelming favourites before Russell slammed 58 in 24 balls and ten Doeschate 51 not out in 41 in an 80-run partnership that put the match back in the balance.
Kolkata then finished the game off with Piyush Chawla hitting the winning runs with six balls to spare, completing an impressive fightback - the like of which is a rarity in the shortest format of the game.
Kolkata made a bright start with the ball on a fast and bouncy track before Brendon McCullum (22) and Dwayne Smith (20) fought back, quick to punish anything too full or short.
The turn to spin worked for Kolkata as Chawla had Smith caught behind and Yusuf Pathan trapped McCullum in front.
Suresh Raina (28) and Faf du Plessis (14) then fell to Sunil Narine and Chawla respectively before MS Dhoni cracked 35 not out in 20 balls and Dwayne Bravo 28 in as many deliveries to give the Chennai bowlers a good target to defend.
Chawla finished with two for 26, Narine one for nine and Pathan one for 16.
Ashish Nehra then exploited the conditions perfectly to leave Kolkata reeling as he removed Manvinder Bisla for two, Gautam Gambhir for six and Manish Pandey for nought.
Mohit Sharma had Pathan (1) caught by du Plessis and when Suryakaumar Yadav fell for 19 to Ravindra Jadeja, an early finish looked possible at 51 for five after nine overs.
However, ten Doeschate and Russell then combined to haul their side back into contention with a series of powerful blows.
Russell, who was outstanding in the recent Caribbean Premier League, carried on that sort of form by hitting four fours and five sixes and by the time he fell, bowled by Nehra (4-21), the game was back on as a contest.
And although Pat Cummins was run out for eight, Kolkata were not to be denied, ten Doeschate standing firm at one end as Chawla - just as he did in the IPL final - hit a four to seal a fine win.
© Cricket World 2014