Ravindra Jadeja hit a 14-ball 36 to guide his side to victory against the Kolkata Knight Riders in Kolkata today.
There was a little hiccup in the middle phase of Chennai Super Kings’ innings,but Jadeja got the big hits towards the end to seal the fixture. The Kolkata Knight Riders were there in the game,but Sunil Narine’s and Jacques Kallis’ expensive last overs made it all too easy for the visitors,who won with five balls to spare.
Chennai made a mess of the modest chase,and were all at sea against Kolkata’s spin duo of Sunil Narine and Sachithra Senanayake The visitors experiment of opening with R Ashwin didn’t work out as the spinner departed without making a substantial contribution.
The spinners took control of the situation and boundaries were not coming for Chennai. Senanayake,in particular,posed a lot of problems for Murali Vijay,who fell prey to the spinner after a testing time in the middle.
A couple of wickets injected a fresh lease of life into the KKR unit,and the visitors were soon reduced to 4/54.
The Aussie was not going at a brisk pace,but kept the scoreboard ticking with the singles as Gambhir was rotating his bowlers really well and didn’t allow CSK to settle down.
Hussey accelerated towards the end but couldn’t see his side through. The left-hander scored a watchful 40 and played a pivotal role in the four-wicket win.
The Eden Gardens’ strip had some grass but the captains didn’t pay too much attention to the same. Gautam Gambhir was not moved by the rain clouds either,and elected to bat first.
Experimenting with a struggling Yusuf Pathan at the top of the order,Kolkata Knight Riders got off to a flying start as boundaries came in plenty. Both Gautam Gambhir and Pathan took the attack to the opposition and left no scoring opportunity.
It was a dream start for the home side,something they have not managed in the tournament so far,before some brilliance in the field halted Gambhir-Pathan show. Michael Hussey took a sensational catch in the deep,S Badrinath produced a brilliant run-out,Dwayne Bravo bowled a deceptive slower one,and followed it with a athletic run-out,to control proceedings.
From 46/0,the defending champions were reduced to 4/55 in no time. The middle-order failed to capitalise on a solid platform and couldn’t make a move on. A lot of hopes were pinned on Manoj Tiwary and Debabrata Das to guide their side to a respectable total,but they duo failed to convert their starts and were removed by R Ashwin in quick succession.
A couple of meaty blows from Sunil Narine took the score over hundred,but It was not a good sight for KKR fans as the team struggled to post a paltry 119/9 on the board.
Kolkata Knight Riders
G Gambhir (c),JH Kallis,YK Pathan,MK Tiwary,EJG Morgan,DB Das (wk),LR Shukla,R Bhatia,SMSM Senanayake,SP Narine,L Balaji
Chennai Super Kings
M Vijay,MEK Hussey,SK Raina,S Badrinath,RA Jadeja,MS Dhoni (c & wk),DJ Bravo,JA Morkel,CH Morris,R Ashwin,MM Sharma