Kolkata - An unbroken century stand between Robin Uthappa
and Andre Russell guided the Kolkata Knight Riders to a seven-wicket revenge
victory over the Chennai Super Kings at Eden Gardens in the Indian Premier
League on Thursday, after losing to the same opponents just a couple of days
ago by two runs in Chennai.
According to the supersport.com website, Uthappa batted
through the innings to end unbeaten on 80 off 58 deliveries with seven
boundaries and one six and was supported by man-of-the-match Russell who was
more aggressive scoring 59 not out off 32 balls with five boundaries and four
maximums as the fourth wicket stand of 112 off 65 balls guided the Knight
Riders to 169 for three with one ball to spare in response to Chennai’s 165 for
The Knight Riders found themselves in some difficulty after
Mohit Sharma (4-0-22-1), slow left-arm spinner Pawan Negi (4-0-23-1) and
debutant right-arm medium bowler Rohit More (3.5-0-35-1) had reduced the hosts
to 57 for three. But Uthappa and Russell set about building a solid partnership
as they reached the 50-run mark in their stand off 31 balls.
Uthappa brought up the landmark with a big maximum off
Ashish Nehra (4-0-36-0), which also brought up his half century off 40 balls.
The pair increased their run-rate slightly to bring up their century stand off
56 balls as Uthappa struck a full-toss from Sharma to the extra-cover boundary.
Earlier, Chennai’s total was built around an explosive start
by Brendon McCullum and Faf du Plessis after Gautam Gambhir had won the toss
and elected to field first.
Gambhir’s decision to field first seemed the perfect
decision as Pat Cummins (4-0-54-1) removed Dwayne Smith with the first ball of
the match. But the New Zealand opening batsman retaliated in spectacular
fashion, smashing three boundaries and three maximums before being trapped lbw
by veteran spinner Brad Hogg (4-0-29-4) for 32 off just 12 balls.
The introduction of the 44-year old left-arm ‘chinaman’ and
leg-break bowler Piyush Chawla (4-0-21-1) brought the Chennai run-away train to
a screeching halt with some tight bowling. Hogg also dismissed Du Plessis,
well-stumped by wicketkeeper Uthappa for 20 off only 11 balls with five
well-struck boundaries. Chawla’s wicket was the big fish of Chennai’s captain,
MS Dhoni, clean-bowled for just a single.
Russell then stepped up and removed his Caribbean
counterpart, Dwayne Bravo, clean-bowled for 30 off 32 balls after the West
Indian all-rounder and Ravindra Jadeja (24) had consolidated the Super Kings’
innings with a sixth-wicket stand of 57 off 58 balls. Russell picked up second
wicket with his first ball of his final over when he had Sharma caught behind
by Uthappa for a first-ball duck.
The 22-year old Negi contributed with the bat as well,
smashing four boundaries and a six before being clean bowled by Hogg for a
well-played 27 off just 13 deliveries.
Chennai remain top of the IPL log with the Knight Riders
moving up to third position with nine points, just three points behind the