Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) defeated Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) by seven wickets in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League here at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium on Friday.
With this win, KKR has now moved on to the fifth position in the league standings with 12 points whereas Kings XI Punjab is placed at the seventh position with 10 points.
Chasing a challenging total of 184, KKR got off to a good start as their opener Chris Lynn hammered the hosts for regular boundaries. Lynn (46) was at his fluent best but his innings was cut short by his fellow countrymen Andrew Tye. KKR had scored 62 runs for the loss of one wicket after the completion of six overs.
Shubhman Gill and Robin Uthappa did not let the momentum slip away and they continued to pile on the misery on Punjab’s bowlers. The duo stitched together a partnership of 38 runs but their resistance was cut short by Punjab skipper Ravichandran Ashwin as he dismissed Uthappa (22).
Gill kept on going on his merry way and he brought up his half-century in the 13th over of the innings. He found support in the big-hitting Andre Russell and the duo put up a 50-run stand taking KKR closer to victory. Russell (24) was dismissed by Shami in the 15th over with KKR requiring another 34 runs to win.
The skipper Dinesh Karthik came out to bat next for KKR and he, along with Gill ensured that the team does not suffer from any more hiccups. The duo stitched together a partnership of ensuring KKR’s victory by seven wickets and with 12 balls to spare. Gill and Karthik remained unbeaten on 65 and 21 respectively.
Earlier, Sam Curran’s knock of 55 runs off just 24 balls helped Kings XI Punjab post 183 runs on the board for the loss of six wickets in the allotted twenty overs.
Kings XI Punjab got off to the worst start possible as they lost both their openers KL Rahul (2) and Chris Gayle (14) inside the first five overs. Sandeep Warrier sent both the batsmen back into the pavilion, reducing Punjab to 22 for two.
Nicholas Pooran came out to bat at number four and he started to play with an aggressive mindset from the very start. He along with Mayank Agarwal retrieved the innings for Punjab as the duo put on a quickfire 69-run stand, but the partnership was cut short as Nitish Rana dismissed Pooran (48) in the 11th over.
Agarwal (36) was also sent back to the pavilion via a run-out and Punjab was reduced to 115 for four at the end of fourteen overs.
Sam Curran gave Punjab some firepower in the death overs and he hammered the visitors for regular boundaries. Although KKR kept scalping wickets at the other end, they were not able to bog down Curran and he ensured that Punjab posts a challenging total on the board. Curran remained unbeaten on 55 at the end of the innings.
Kings XI Punjab will next play against Chennai Super Kings whereas Kolkata Knight Riders will take on Mumbai Indians on May 5.
Kolkata Knight Riders 185/3 (Shubhman Gill 65*, CA Lynn 46, ) defeat Kings XI Punjab 183/6 (S Curran 55*, N Pooran 48, S Sandeep Warrier 2-31) by seven wickets.
(With ANI inputs)