Friday, 3 October 2014

CKT20: KKR surge their way into final

HYDERABAD: The Oppo Champions League Twenty20 final will be contested by two IPL teams, after all. Kolkata Knight Riders ensured the last vestige of foreign flavour was eliminated with a seven-wicket win over Hobart Hurricanes in a semifinal that failed to match the expectations of a near full house at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium on Thursday.

Man-of-the-Match Jacques Kallis (54 no; 40b, 4x4, 6x2) and Manish Pandey (40; 32b, 6x4, 6x1) complemented the excellent work of the Knight Riders' bowlers - three of them returned identical figures - and a target of 141 was not to prove difficult for the IPL champions on a wicket that the Hurricanes reckoned was good to bat first and found it tough going against the spinners.

The loss of early wickets and lack of momentum - there was not a single boundary between overs 6 and 12.4 (40b) -- meant Shoaib Malik (66 no; 46b, 4x4, 4x4) had little choice but to be circumspect to start with as the Hurricanes were poorly placed at 88 for four after 15 overs. But for the 21 runs conceded by Kuldeep Yadav in the 19th over, the Hurricanes would have had less to show than the 140 for six they posted.

Ben Dunk (39; 29b, 4x4, 6x1) was the only left-hander among four in the top five to show some enterprise after Andre Russell made early inroads. The Knight Riders then choked the Hurricanes with Yusuf Pathan, Sunil Narine and to a lesser extent Yadav and Piyush Chawla; aided in good measure by crease-tied batsmen, Malik being an exception.

Pandey, reprieved off a Ben Hilfenhaus' no-ball, added 63 for the third wicket (50b) with Kallis. And when he fell on the doorstep of victory, Yusuf Pathan finished the match in the company of Kallis with five balls to spare.

Brief Scores:

Hobart Hurricanes: 140 for 6 in 20 overs (Shoaib Malik 66 not out, Ben Dunk 39; Y Pathan 1/24, S Narine 1/24) lost to Kolkata Knight Riders: 141 for 3 in 19.1 overs (Jacques Kallis 54 not out, Manish Pandey 40; Dough Bollinger 1/26) Narine,Manish Pandey,Kolkata Knight Riders,Jacques Kallis,Hobart Hurricanes

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