T20 2018: Kolkata's Dinesh Karthik, Shubman Gill boss over Chennai

May 04, 2018, 07:21 IST | Arup Chatterjee

Gill's unbeaten 57 and skipper Karthik's 45 not out help Kolkata beat Chennai

Kolkata skipper Dinesh Karthik scored an 18-ball 45 yesterday
Kolkata skipper Dinesh Karthik scored an 18-ball 45 yesterday

The boys are turning men at Kolkata. At the packed Eden Gardens yesterday, Shubman Gill made the most of his opportunity to help his team to victory over table-toppers Chennai. Gill, a member of India's U-19 World Cup-winning team, joined Kolkata skipper Dinesh Karthik in a crucial fifth-wicket partnership that took Kolkata over the line after they had restricted the marauding Chennai to 177-5.

Gill, 18, was unbeaten on a 36-ball 57 that had six fours and two sixes. Karthik finished with an unbeaten 45 off 18 with seven fours and a six. Karthik had won a good toss, grabbing the opportunity to protect the Knights from another famous chase by Chennai's big guns even as he put the visitors under pressure to put a big total on the board. It seemed to be working till one Mahendra Singh Dhoni put his finishing touch.

Kolkata's Shubman Gill scored an unbeaten 36-ball 57 yesterday
Kolkata's Shubman Gill scored an unbeaten 36-ball 57 yesterday

To the chants of "Dhoni! Dhoni!", the Chennai skipper played a typical innings, a slow start ending in a crescendo as he scored an unbeaten 43 off 25 that had a boundary and four sixes. It was not without a little luck as young Shubman Gill dropped him at the deep square-leg boundary off Kuldeep Yadav when he was on 29.

But, then, the more incredulous slips on this night would happen in the second half of the match when Ravindra Jadeja, one of the best fielders in the game, dropped Sunil Narine off successive deliveries at mid-on. The Trinidadian southpaw, on six when he got the reprieves, went on to score a 20-ball 32 that had four fours and a couple of sixes. Narine had earlier come back with fine figures of The reply by the Knights had begun on a dramatic note as Chris Lynn sent young Ngidi for sixes off successive deliveries before failing to pass the Chennai review on a faint edge. Wickets fell at regular intervals and, just when things seemed to be going wrong the fifth-wicket partnership between Gill and Karthik put Kolkata back on rails.

Watson and du Plesis took a swipe at everything and, while elegance took a beating at times, the runs came at a decent clip. The fifth over saw Mitchell Johnson concede 19 runs, Watson and du Plesis helping themselves to a six each.

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