IPL 2016: Gujarat Lions beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 5 wickets at Kolkata, Stars and Flops

The 38th game of the Indian Premier League saw Gujarat Lions climbing at the apex of the points table after crushing Kolkata Knight Riders by 5 wickets in their own den. Dinesh Karthik powered Gujarat Lions’ run-chase and guided his side to a sound victory. It was a terrific outing by the GL bowler’s which helped them put their side in command right from the outset at Eden Gardens. IPL 2016, Match 38, Pick of the tweets: Kolkata Knight Riders vs Gujarat Lions at Kolkata

GL won the toss and opted to bowl first on a pitch which looked good for seam bowling. Praveen Kumar drew the first blood when he got the better of Gautam Gambhir and broke KKR’s spine. Moments later, he also got rid of Manish Pandey and put KKR on the back foot. Dhawal Kulkarni too chipped in with the key wicket of Robin Uthappa and steered his side in a dominating position. Suresh Raina got Dwayne Smith into the attack and the move rightly paid off as he scalped Suryakumar Yadav with some extra bit of bounce. Raina took a flying catch and stunned everyone with his marvellous effort. VIDEO: Suresh Raina stretches full to pull off a blinder to get rid of Suryakumar Yadav

Yusuf Pathan and Shakib Al Hasan stuck to their guns and confronted the pumped GL bowling attack with immense effort and guided their side to a fighting total. Pathan kept chipping odd boundaries in every over and rotated the strike along with keeping the run rate under check. Shakib on the other hand, looked uncomfortable in the start but didn’t throw his wicket away. In the end, he took on the GL bowlers and scored runs at brisk pace as he shifted his gears. KKR, somehow managed a decent total of 158 in their 20 overs without losing any more wickets.

Restricting a star studded side like GL for less than 158 was always going to be a tough ask for KKr bowlers. Smith and Brendon McCullum came out hard with the former going berserk at the start. Both the openers played their part and got their team off to a good start. Dinesh Karthik was the centre of attraction with his determined knock along with calculated risks. Aaron Finch looked good for 29 off just 10 deliveries as he played some eye pleasing shots in his cameo. But unfortunately, he didn’t manage to stay till the end as his innings was curtailed by a run out. GL successfully chased down the target in 18 overs and won the thrilling encounter by 5 wickets.

Turning Point: KKR lost their four batsmen inside the power play overs which turned the game in GL’s favour. Though KKR managed a modest total of 158 runs but that was never going to prove sufficient to restrict a batting line up which hails of McCullum, Smith, Raina, Karthik, Finch, Jadeja and Bravo.

gl vs kkr

Brief Scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 158 for 4 in 20 overs [Shakib Al Hasan 66*(49), Yusuf Pathan 63*(41); Praveen Kumar 4-1-19-2, Dwayne Smith 2-0-14-1] lost to Gujarat Lions 164 for 5 in 18 overs [Dinesh Karthik 51(29), Aaron Finch 29(10); Andre Russell 3-0-21-1, Piyush Chawla 4-0-30-1) by 5 wickets.