Kolkata: Kolkata Knight Riders proved once again why they are a champion side after they thoroughly routed the Kings XI Punjab side by eight wickets with 3.3 overs remaining at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Wednesday evening.
After winning the toss, Kolkata skipper Gautam Gambhir sent in the Punjab side to bat. Openers Hashim Amla and Manan Vohra put on a solid start as they raced to 53 runs in just 5.1 overs before Piyush Chawla dismissed Vohra with a beauty of a delivery. And from then on, wickets kept tumbling regularly whenever a sort of partnership was established.
Umesh Yadav, who missed Kolkata’s first two matches made a remarkable comeback as he scalped four wickets giving away 33 runs. Colin De Grandhomme, who was bought in by KKR as Andre Russell’s replacement bowled beautifully as well. An overall effort by the KKR bowlers restricted the Punjab side to 170.
However all were surprised when Sunil Narine came out to bat along with Gambhir in Chris Lynn’s absence. And he truly did prove a point or two. Sent in to bat as a pinch-hitter, the left-hander smacked the Punjab bowlers all round the park as he along with Gambhir scored 72 runs in just 5.4 overs and virtually, the game was over right there.
However the dismissals of Narine and Uthappa brought in some hope for the men in red but Gambhir and Manish Pander ensured that the target was reached safely. The Kolkata skipper played a captain’s knock as he notched up his second fifty in three matches. He is now the Orange Cap holder as well.
With this thumping win, Kolkata jumped to the top of the table with four points and a solid net run rate of 1.47. Kings XI however slip to the third position.
Kings XI Punjab 170/9 (Manan Vohra 28, David Miller 28; Umesh Yadav 4/33) lost to Kolkata Knight Riders 171/2 in 16.3 overs (Gautam Gambhir 72, Sunil Narine 37; Varun Aaron 1/23) by 8 wickets