Jamaican Chris Gayle smashed his second half-century of the season to help Royal Challengers Bangalore record their third win as the hosts defeated holders Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets in a Pepsi Indian Premier League game here yesterday.
Soon after the victory, Gayle dedicated the innings to his mother on her birthday via Twitter. “Shame on me.. How could I forgot to mention My Mom Birthday!! That was for Mom... Happy Birthday Mom!! Chris love U like cook FOOD!! Kisses!” Gayle wrote.
The 33-year old Gayle unleashed a typical blitz (85 not out, 50b, 4x4, 9x6) as Royal Challengers posted 158 for two in 17.3 overs in reply to Knight Riders’ total of 154 for eight.
Knight Riders’ total was possible mainly due to an attacking 59 (49b, 7x4, 1x6) by skipper Gautam Gambhir. He, however, was a helpless spectator along with his teammates as the Jamaican Gayle unleashed himself.
The successful Royal Challengers’ chase was built around two entertaining partnerships: Gayle and captain Virat Kohli (35, 27b, 4x4, 2x6) put on 63 runs for the second wicket while, after Kohli’s departure, Gayle and AB de Villiers (22 not out, 22b, 2x4, 1x6) took the team over the finish line with an 83-run stand.
Barring off-spinner Sunil Narine, who conceded only 17 runs in his four overs, the rest of the Knight Riders bolwers hardly looked the part once Gayle got going. The lack of discipline in their bowling too contributed to the Knight Riders’ defeat with as many as eight wides and two no-balls.
Earlier, Knight Riders, though scoring at a fair clip, could never really collar the Royal Challengers’ attack and it was left to Gambhir to hold the innings together while other batsmen, Jacques Kallis (16), Yusuf Pathan (27) and Manoj Tiwary (23), chipped in. Rajat Bhatia (13) slammed a couple of fours to post 154 for eight.
Kolkata Knight Riders 154-8 in 20 overs (G Gambhir 59, Y Pathan 27; RP Singh 3-27) lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore 158-2 in 17.3 overs (C Gayle 85*, V Kohli 35; L Balaji 1-33) by 8 wickets