Some brilliant batting by Robin Uthappa and Andre Russell along with some superb bowling by Brad Hogg saw KKR crush CSK by seven wickets at Eden Gardens on Thursday night
Kolkata: Kolkata Knight Riders celebrated their homecoming in style beating Chennai Super Kings by seven wickets in their return leg clash of the Indian Premier League at Eden Gardens on Thursday night.
A 112-run partnership off just 64 deliveries for the unbroken fourth wicket between Robin Uthappa and Andre Russell saw Kolkata Knight Riders avenge Tuesday's defeat to Chennai Super Kings.
Chasing 166 on a slow turner, the Knights made heavy weather of it -- loosing the plot in the middle and then getting to the target with a ball to spare.
Uthappa's unbeaten 80 came in 58 deliveries with seven fours and a six while Russell remained not out with a 32-ball 55 that had five fours and four sixes.
The defending champions climbed back to the third rung on the league ladder.
KKR's Robin Uthappa en route his match-winning 80 off 58 balls against CSK at Eden Gardens on Thursday. Pic/PTI
As it did a couple of days before in Chennai, the chase began on a bright note as Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir stitched together a 33-run partnership at a decent trot.
Skipper Gambhir, trying to hit Mohit Sharma out of the ground, provided Super Kings the window of opportunity they were looking for. Manish Pandey and Suryakumar Yadav, KKR's bright young hopes, continued to disappoint, lasting a total of 13 deliveries between them and scoring five runs.
Dhoni's men applied the squeeze and the asking rate climbed. It all seemed to be going the way it did on Tuesday, when KKR failed to chase down a target of 134 in Chennai, but Uthappa and Russell brought the chase back on track.
Uthappa carved 15 runs off Ashish Nehra's final over, hitting him for a six over long-on and cutley cutting him for a couple of fours. Andre Russell was soon into the act and the next two overs, bowled by Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo, fetched another 15 each. The equation had been brought down to 19 off 18.
While Super Kings missed Ravichandran Ashwin, who was injured in their previous match, his replacement, left-arm spinner Pawan Negi actually had a decent allround performance.
Earlier, a stunning four-wicket haul by veteran Brad Hogg enabled Kolkata Knight Riders restrict a marauding Chennai Super Kings to 165 for nine.
The match began on dramatic note, Ryan ten Doeschate diving left at gully to pluck out Dwayne Smith off the first ball but Brendon McCullum gave Pat Cummins the charge for a couple of sixes to ensure that the over produced 19 runs.
One-drop Suresh Raina left soon enough, but with McCullum maintaing that murderous mood -- he cut Cummuns for another six in the Aussie pacer's next over -- and Faf du Plessis repeatedly finding the rope, the Knights were under pressure. This changed when they gave it a spin.
'Chinaman' Brad Hogg picked up both McCullum and du Plessis in his first over, having the first ball hurry on to trap the Kiwi in front for a 12-ball 28 and then fooling the South African with a wrong un to have him stumped. When Dhoni left the next over, done in by a Piyush Chawla wrong 'un that kept a trifle low, the Super Kings were 72 for 5 and had been pegged back.
(Inputs from Agencies)
Chennai Super Kings: 165 for nine in 20 overs (Brendon McCullum 32, Dwayne Bravo 30; Brad Hogg 4/29).
Kolkata Knight Riders: 169 for three in 19.5 overs (Robin Uthappa 80 not out, Andre Russell 59 not out; Mohit Sharma
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