Kings XI Punjab celebrate the fall of Gautam Gambhir in clash vs Kolkata Knight Riders    BCCI
Kings XI Punjab celebrate the fall of Gautam Gambhir in clash vs Kolkata Knight Riders BCCI

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) remained in contention to qualify for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 playoffs, after they trumped Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 14 runs, in match 49. However, the road to IPL 10 playoffs remains as challenging as it was when they entered this contest. Needing to win all their remaining games, KXIP showed great character and skills to snatch the game away from Kolkata Knight Riders, who were off to a brisk start once again. Chris Lynn waged a lone battle as he scored 84 in KKR s reply, but Mohit Sharma s brilliance in the death overs sealed the game for KXIP in their favour. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 10 Match 49

Chasing 168 to win, KKR fell short as they managed 153 for 6 in their 20 overs. Kolkata Knight Riders were once again off to a flier, thanks to brilliant hitting by Sunil Narine and Lynn. Sandeep Sharma is known for giving Kings XI Punjab tight starts and even early wickets, but he was hit for two boundaries off the first two balls by Narine, followed by one from Lynn, as KKR added 14 off the first over to make their intentions clear. Lynn continued with his counterattack in the second over, smacking two fours off Matt Henry in the second over. FULL CRICKET UPDATES: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 10 Match 49

Kolkata Knight Riders added 31 runs off the first three overs before their opening stand was broken. In the fourth over from Mohit Sharma, Narine continued to look for boundaries as he hit two identical fours, before being cleaned up on the fourth ball. Narine, who had scored the joint fastest IPL fifty in the last game, perished for a 10-ball 18.

Meanwhile, Lynn kept getting quick runs as Akshar Patel was punished for consecutive fours, followed by a four as well as a six off Henry, in the sixth over. KXIP needed wickets, but Lynn was going full trottle, and was joined by the in-form Gambhir. The two batsmen added 39 runs in a little less than 6 overs to keep KKR afloat.

Looking for a comeback into the contest, KXIP needed a few wickets as well as tight overs. To their luck, the home side got both. Tewatia started off with his spell giving away a mere 3 runs in the first over. In his next, he claimed the wickets of big guns in Gambhir and Robin Uthappa. While Gambhir was dismissed for an 18-ball 8, Uthappa was dismissed for a first-ball duck, thanks to a brilliant catch by Akshar. KXIP did well in the 2 overs that followed, allowing just 7 runs to KKR.

On the other hand, Lynn continued to hold one end, picking up quick runs on any opportunity that came his way. He remained the only hope for Kolkata Knight Riders, as Manish Pandey too struggled for timing for most of his innings.

However, Pandey managed to bring up his half-century stand with Lynn, but perished soon after. Pandey was dismissed on the first ball of the 18th over, giving a simple catch to Akshar at deep mid-wicket off Henry for a 23-ball 18 with the help of a four.

Pressure mounted on Kolkata Knight Riders, and soon KXIP celebrated the key wicket of Lynn, who was ran out while attempting the second run. He fell at a time when Kolkata Knight Riders needed another 37 to win off 17 balls. Lynn smacked 8 fours and 3 sixes to score 84, for which he consumed a mere 52 balls.

KXIP kept making inroads into the KKR line-up, as Yusuf Pathan was the next to succumb to the pressure. He played straight to Glenn Maxwell, manning the long-on position. He scored 2 off a mere 3 balls.

Mohit was brilliant towards the ending stages, as he mixed the off-cutters, back-of-the-hand delivery as well as the knuckle ball perfectly to allow 7 and 9 runs in his final 2 overs respectively.

However, the hero of KXIP’s win was Tewatia, who shone with both bat and the ball. Tewatia cracked three vital boundaries in ending stages of KXIP’s innings. Later on, he returned with the figures of 4-0-18-2.

Earlier in the first innings, Maxwell swatted 4 sixes and 1 four to score a quick 25-ball 44, and Wriddhiman Saha scored a crucial 38 as KXIP crawled to a total of 167 for 6. For KKR, Chris Woakes claimed 2 for 20 off his 4 overs and Kuldeep Yadav claimed 2 for 34 off his 3 overs.

Brief scores:

Kings XI Punjab 167 for 6 in 20 overs (Manan Vohra 25, Wriddhiman Saha 38, Glenn Maxwell 44; Chris Woakes 2 for 19, Kuldeep Yadav 2 for 34) beat Kolkata Knight Riders 153 for 6 in 20 overs (Chris Lynn 84; Mohit Sharma 2 for 24, Rahul Tewatia 2 for 18) by 14 runs.

Man of the Match: Mohit Sharma

FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 10 Match 49