Kings XI Punjab beat Kolkata Knight Riders by six wickets
Mahela Jayawardene cracked an unbeaten 41-ball 52 to guide Kings XI Punjab to a six-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders in a last ball thriller in the IPL match in Port Elizabeth, reports Subhash Rajta. Listen to podcast | Special coveragecricket Updated: May 04, 2009 02:39 IST
Kolkata Knight riders seem to be trying a new method to unravel the T20 riddle. From their batting today it looked like they have decided to approach the format with an ODI mindset.
They preserved wickets and managed 153 against Kings XI Punjab, thanks to unbeaten 70 from Brad Hodge who is living up to his reputation of being an expert in this form.
However, nothing seems to be working for the beleaguered Knight Riders who sunk to another defeat, this time off the last ball. Desperate for a face-saving win, this could be enough to crush the spirits of the team. But the Knight Riders have themselves to blame as they dropped quite a few catches, which eventually cost them the match.
Kings XI found their guiding angel in Mahela Jayawardene who shouldered the responsibility of seeing them home with characteristic calm. Needing 18 runs off the last two overs, Kings XI may have left themselves with a bit too much to get but the Sri Lankan kept his cool and sealed a last-ball win.
It was surprising to see Brandon McCullum and Chris Gayle intent on defending instead of going for their strokes.
Kolkata Knight Riders: 153 runs for 3 in 20 overs. (Brad Hodge 70 not out, Ganguly 22; Piyush Chawla 2/27).
Kings XI Punjab: 154 for four in 20 overs. (Mahela Jayawardene 52 not out, Simon Katich 34; Ishant Sharma 2/27).
Kings XI Punjab: Yuvraj Singh (C), Simon Katich, Sunny Sohel, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Irfan Pathan, Romesh Powar, Tanmay Srivastava, Vikramjit Malik, Piyush Chawla, Yusuf Abdulla.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Brendon McCullum (C), Chris Gayle, Brad Hodge, Sourav Ganguly, Morne van Wyk, Wridhiman Saha, Laxmiratan Shukla, Ajit Agarkar, Murali Kartik, Ishant Sharma, Ashok Dinda.