Kolkata Knight Riders players celebrate with the trophy after their victory against Kings XI Punjab in the IPL final match at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore. (Gurpreet Singh/HT Photo)
On the morning of the game, IPL chairman Sunil Gavaskar expressed a wish that he would be happiest if the final went right down to the wire. The gods seemed to smile on the Indian legend as Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab dished out a thrilling finale where the game was the winner.
KKR pipped Kings XI by three wickets to win their second title in three years.
Read: The match as it happened
However, when the match started, it seemed the story of the final would be about another Bengal boy, Wriddhiman Saha. The wicketkeeper-batsman is used to a supporting role — having played second fiddle to MS Dhoni all his career — but he turned out to be the hero for Punjab, taking them to a competitive 199 for 4 with a 55-ball 115. It was, and is, the first century scored in an IPL final.
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But as the game progressed, he saw his best ever innings eclipsed by another batsman, KKR's Manish Pandey, who stole Saha's thunder with a swashbuckling 94 on his home ground.
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KKR did everything right at the start and their famed bowling unit took the early advantage by claiming the wickets of the dangerous Virender Sehwag and skipper George Bailey before the sixth over. Saha's heroics seemed to take the contest away from Kolkata, for a while, but they managed to keep the big hits coming and, in the end, notched up their second IPL crown with a boundary and three balls to spare.
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