Bengaluru: Talented Punjab batsman Mandeep Singh kept his cool under pressure as his breathtaking 18-ball-45 enabled Royal Challengers Bangalore pip Kolkata Knight Riders by seven wickets in a nerve-wracking Indian Premier League encounter, in Bengaluru on Saturday.
In a rain-hit tie reduced to 10-overs-per side, KKR scored 111 for 4 courtesy Andre Russell's 17-ball-45 but it was Mandeep's exhilarating effort that saw Virat Kohli's boys romp home with two balls to spare.
Mandeep Singh leads RCB to a seven-wicket win over KKR in a rain-hit IPL 8 match on Saturday. Pic/PTI
Mandeep's knock had four boundaries and three sixes with the last two maximums coming off successive deliveries from Andre Russell's last over where RCB required 13 runs.
With 9 required off last four balls, Mandeep first made room to slash Russell for a six over point and then pulled over deep fine leg to finish off the match in style.
At the end of the 8th over, RCB required 26 from two with their Chris Gayle 21 off 9 balls (3x6), Virat Kohli 34 off 20 balls (2x4, 3x6) along with AB de Villiers (2) back in the dug-out.
It was the fifth and sixth deliveries off the penultimate over bowled by Umesh Yadav that turned the match head on.
Mandeep played a delicate lap shot over short fine leg off the fifth delivery of 9th over while the next went for boundary through vacant third man region.
The win took RCB to nine points and fourth spot removing Delhi Daredevils. It also kept them in the hunt for play-offs.
Kolkata Knight Riders: 111 for four in 10 overs (Andre Russell 45, Mitchell Starc 1/15)
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 115 for 3 in 9.4 overs. (Mandeep Singh 45 not out, Virat Kohli 34; Piyush Chawla 1/21)