KKR prevail in thriller

Kolkata side stuns defending champs Chargers

The gumption that had been conspicuous for a majority of last year in South Africa was on full view in the opening match of the third edition of the Indian Premier League at the DY Patil stadium on Friday night.

Rocked by Chaminda Vaas’ twin strikes in the very first over of the competition as Deccan Chargers began the defence of their title, the Knight Riders looked out for the count before storming back in spectacular fashion in front of a large but hardly capacity crowd.
With Sri Lankan Angelo Mathews playing the lead role and key contributions coming in from other quarters, Sourav Ganguly’s boys pulled off a stunner, upending the defending champions by 11 runs to get their campaign off to the perfect start imaginable.
The Chargers will look back at his match as a game lost rather than a game won. They began both innings strongly, but flagged towards the end and were forced to pay a heavy price, the lack of experience and heavy artillery in the middle-order scuppering their run-chase, which ended at 150 for seven after the Knight Riders, asked to bat first, raised 161 for four.

With Vaas accounting for Manoj Tiwary first ball after the match began 15 minutes late, and then winkling out Ganguly, back in charge, three deliveries later, the Chargers were away to a dream beginning. The Kolkata outfit garnered no momentum through the middle overs as left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha weaved a tantalising web after Rudra Pratap Singh and Jaskaran Singh had struck once each to leave the Knight Riders gasping at 31 for four.

That’s when Mathews strode out to join Owais Shah. Where Shah was circumspect to start with, Mathews flowed freely from the off, striking the ball crisply and cleanly. Shah took his time playing himself in, but he too exploded in a frenzy towards the end as the Chargers came under the cosh.
The pair put on an unbroken 130 (90b) for the fifth wicket, the last six overs yielding 80 runs as the Chargers were left with a tricky run chase.

SCORE BOARD

KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS: Manoj Tiwary c Rohit b Vaas 0, Brad Hodge c Gibbs b Jaskaran 13, Sourav Ganguly c Anirudh b Vaas 0, Cheteshwar Pujara c Ojha b RP Singh 10, Owais Shah (not out) 58, Angelo Mathews (not out) 65. Extras (LB-8, W-6, NB-1) 15. Total (for 4 wkts, 20 overs) 161.
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-0, 3-31, 4-31.
Bowling: Chaminda Vaas 3-1-22-2, Rudra Pratap Singh 4-0-35-1, Jaskaran Singh 4-0-35-1, Pragyan Ojha 4-0-19-0, Andrew Symonds 4-0-26-0, T Suman 1-0-16-0.
DECCAN CHARGERS: Adam Gilchrist c Tiwary b Hodge 54, VVS Laxman c & b Kartik 22, Herschelle Gibbs c Mathews b Langeveldt 19, Andrew Symonds c Ganguly b Ishant 5, Rohit Sharma c Hodge b Mathews 13, Anirudh Singh c & b Shukla 14, T Suman (not out) 7, Chaminda Vaas b Langeveldt 0, Jaskaran Singh (not out) 4. Extras (B-4, LB-1, W-5, NB-2) 12. Total (for 7 wkts, 20 overs) 150.
Fall of wickets: 1-61, 2-99, 3-102, 4-116, 5-128, 6-141, 7-142.
Bowling: Charl Langeveldt 4-0-26-2, Ishant Sharma 4-0-31-1, Laxmi Ratan Shukla 3-0-30-1, Murali Kartik 3-0-17-1, Angelo Mathews 4-0-27-1, Brad Hodge 2-0-14-1.

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