Yusuf Pathan’s 18-ball 37 helped Kolkata Knight Riders defeat Rising Pune Supergiants by 8 wickets at Kolkata to jump to the second position in the IPL table. Earlier, Pune huffed and puffed to a score of 103/6 in 17.4 overs before the rain arrived to set the hosts a target of 66 runs in 9 overs.
Rising Pune Supergiants travelled to Kolkata hoping to ruin two-time Champions Kolkata Knight Riders’ plans of making it into the top four. MS Dhoni finally brought in Irfan Pathan to the team in place of RP Singh, while Rajat Bhatia made way for Murugan Ashwin, who missed the last two matches with a side strain. The home side also made two changes to their lineup as Sunil Narine and Ankit Rajpoot came into the side to replace Brad Hogg and Umesh Yadav. M S Dhoni won the toss and opted to bat first, with the surface showing signs of slowing down later on.ith their playoff hopes over,
Pune never get going
After losing all the six times they have batted first in the IPL this season, Usman Khawaja and Ajinkya Rahane came out to bat hoping to give the team a good start. However, Pune’s innings never got going as the team lost wickets at regular intervals. Rahane was the first to depart as he inside-edged one from Russell onto the stumps in the 3rd over to walk back to the pavilion. Khawaja, who escaped a close shout in the 4th over, finally perished in the 5th after sending a ball from Shakib Al Hasan straight to the hands of Suryakumar Yadav at square leg.
With the team in a bit of a trouble, George Bailey and Saurabh Tiwary stitched together a 41-run stand before Ankit Rajpoot struck to dismiss the latter. As Pune struggled and stuttered, Gambhir brought on his spinners and placed the fielders around the bat looking to stifle the Pune side further. It worked perfectly as Chawla removed a well-settled Bailey for 33, before claiming the wicket of Thisara Perrera. Irfan Pathan also came in between the two wickets and gave away his wicket to keep Dhoni at the crease in what was a comical run-out. Dhoni struggled from the start and failed to find any rhythm in his innings scoring 8 off 22 balls before rain ended his misery by paying a visit to the Eden Gardens. The rain took away more than two hours of play and left KKR needing 66 from 9 overs to win the match.
Ashwin strikes early, but Yusuf finishes in a hurry
Robin Uthappa smashed Ashwin through the covers on the first ball for a boundary to start KKR's chase, but the off-spinner bounced back by turning one past Uthappa through the leg-side to catch the batsman out of his crease. Ashwin made it a brilliant first over for the away side after he trapped Gautham Gambhir in front of the stumps to put KKR two down. However, Yusuf Pathan arrived in the middle with a mission to finish the match in a hurry, and went after Ashok Dinda in the second over and scored 13 runs, before taking R Ashwin to the cleaners in the next over by scoring 22 more. The right-hander made a mockery of the 66-run target and finished the match in the 5th over to take KKR to second in the table.