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By Abhijit Banare
Apr 19, 2014
Manish Pandey‘s 48 and Robin Uthappa‘s 55 laid the foundation for a formidable total of 166 for five for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) against Delhi Daredevils (DD) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2014 match at Dubai. Kolkata scored 100 in the last 10 overs. The low-scoring first match of the day at Dubai had already witnessed two ducks in the form of Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh in the same over. And to keep the statisticians interested, Jacques Kallis went for a golden duck while Gautam Gambhir departed for a four-ball duck. This was Gambhir’s second duck in as many matches.
The early wickets allowed stand-in skipper Dinesh Karthik to continue with an attacking field with as many as three slips. But Delhi bowlers weren’t on target either. Mohammed Shami who got Kallis on the second ball of the match conceded as many as seven extras in that over and delivered a few more. Nathan Coulter-Nile who replaced Wayne Parnell was reading the batsmen well. Delhi looked much prepared for the match and it was visible in the way they got Gambhir out. With the left-hander’s habitt of tentatively flicking on the legside, a legslip was placed and Gambhir fell for the trap.
It was the in-from Pandey who once again came to the rescue. It was a precarious start for him playing some rash shots and failing to connect a few slower ones. He found his confidence as he hung on and started off with a boundary in the fifth over. James Neesham who repalced as first change was smashed for two more boundaries. Pandey had a fair bit of luck to back him as well. Ross Taylor dropped a regulation catch at short midwicket when he was on 28.
Pandey continued to play the role of aggressor while Uthappa was content rotating the strike. They maintained a steady rate of a touch less then seven an over, and expected to up the ante later as they did in the previous match. Pandey was in fluent touch and in the 11th over hammered two boundaries off Shahbaz Nadeem with pull shots. But Nadeem had his moment of glory as Pandey failed to read an arm ball which went through his defence. Pandey’s 42-ball 48 included five hits to the fence and shared a 64-run stand with Uthappa,
Skipper Karthik then brought in JP Duminy to squeeze out a few overs. Kolkata though maintained their batting order and Shakib Al Hasan walked in ahead of Yusuf Pathan. Shakib and Uthappa then scored briskly with the latter hitting a reverse sweep off Duminy. Shakib eased the pressure with a huge six over midwicket in the next over.
It was Neesham’s overs which cost Delhi a lot more runs than expected. He went for 13 in his first and conceded the same when he came back to bowl his second in the 15th over. Uthappa followed with two more boundaries in the next over before the second strategic time-out was taken. The Karnataka opener completed his fifty in 38 balls and continued to press for more along with Shakib. Jaydev Unadkat finally got the prized scalp as Uthappa was caught at deep mid-wicket for 55 from 41 balls. Yusuf Pathan and Shakib then threw their bat around to power them to a formidable total. Coulter-Nile was impressive conceding less than six and over.
It will take some gritty batting from Delhi to get past a miserly Sunil Narine and co to register their first win in this IPL.
Kolkata Knight Riders 166 for 5 in 20 overs (Manish Pandey 48, Robin Uthappa 55; Jaydev Unadkat 1 for 25) vs Delhi Daredevils.
(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)
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