Gambhir leads KKR to easy win over Delhi

2015-04-21 00:00

GAUTAM Gambhir struck a controlled fifty to lead the Kol­kata Knight Riders to a ­comfortable six-wicket win over the Delhi Daredevils in their Indian Premier League match at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi yesterday.

Gambhir scored 60 off 48 balls with eight fours as Kolkata, chasing Delhi’s 146-8, cruised to 147-4 off 18.1 overs.

Robin Uthappa (13) and Gambhir gave Kolkata a solid start to their run chase with a first-wicket stand of 31 before Uthappa chipped a delivery from seamer Domnic Joseph (2-18) to JP Duminy at mid-off.

Joseph struck three balls later when he had Manish Pandey caught at third man as Kolkata’s innings wobbled a touch.

But Gambhir and Suryakumar Yadav (24) put on 48 runs for the third wicket before Yadav feathered an outside edge off the bowling of paceman Nathan Coulter-Nile through to keeper Kedar Jadhav.

Gambhir reached his fifty, off 38 balls, by striking the eighth four of his innings before he and Yusuf Pathan shared in a 65-run fourth-wicket stand to steer Kolkata to the brink of victory. Pathan was in a particularly destructive mood as he raced to 40 not out off 26 deliveries with six fours and a six. Gambhir was out with just three needed for victory when he was bowled by legspinner Imran Tahir.

Morné Morkel, Piyush Chawla and Umesh Yadav had earlier shared six wickets as Kolkata made full use of winning the toss and electing to bowl on a pitch with variable bounce.

Paceman Morkel nabbed 2-30 while legspinner Chawla snared 2-27 but fast bowler ­Yadav was the stand-pout performer with the ball as he ended with the miserly figures of 4-0-18-2.

Morkel struck in his first over when he had Mayank Aragwal (1) caught at fine leg before spinner Sunil Narine bowled Duminy (5) to reduce Delhi to 22-2 in the fifth over.

Shreyas Iyer and Manoj ­Tiwary steadied the innings with a third-wicket stand of 36 before Iyer, who scored a competent 31 off 24 balls, was bowled by Chawla.

Tiwary and Yuvraj Singh then combined for a fourth-wicket partnership of 37 but Morkel claimed his second victim when Tiwary, after scoring 32 off 28 deliveries, mistimed a pull shot and was caught at midwicket.

Delhi’s innings continued to stutter and Yuvraj Singh, who struck a few lusty blows in scoring 21 off 19 balls, was stumped off the bowling of Chawla.

Jadhav (12) was the next man to depart, caught at backward point off the bowling Yadav to leave Delhi on 123-6 after 18.

Angelo Mathews (28) finally launched an assault for Delhi when he struck back-to-back sixes off the bowling of Narine as 20 runs were score off the 19th over. Coulter-Nile (2) was run out during the last over before Yadav captured his second wicket when he had Mathews caught behind the stumps.

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