Mumbai, (PTI) Manish Pandey smashed an unbeaten 81 off 47 balls to help Kolkata Knight Riders recover from a mini collapse and reach 178 for seven against Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League here today.
The visitors, asked to bat first, made a brisk start when openers Chris Lynn (32) and captain Gautam Gambhir (19) put on 44 runs in four overs before losing their way against left-arm spinner Krunal Pandya.
Krunal's twin strike in the fifth over reduced the Knight Riders from 44 for no loss to 48 for two and then 87 for four before the innings was revived by Pandey.
The Karnataka batsman struck Mitchell McClenaghan for two sixes and as many fours in the last over of the innings that produced 23 runs.
It was mainly due to the Karnataka batsman s clean hitting that the total crossed the 150 mark.
But apart from his superb knock, the KKR innings lacked character.
Krunal finished with fine figures of 3 for 24 while Malinga got 2 for 36 while McClenaghan finished with 1 for 51.
Kolkata were off to a flyer with Lynn and Gambhir scoring freely against the medium-pacers so that after four overs the score was an impressive 44 without loss.
The duo had come into the game after powering the Knight Riders to a comprehensive ten-wicket win over Gujarat Lions at Rajkot two nights ago after putting up a first wicket all-time high record of 184 with Lynn cracking a 41-ball 93.
He again looked in good touch and also smacked a short ball from McClenaghan over the mid-wicket area into the stands when the left arm bowler from New Zealand pitched short.
Lasith Malinga, the IPL s highest wicket taker who had missed the last IPL edition, was off target initially and gave away runs.
Jasprit Bumrah was hit for two successive fours by Gambhir while McClenaghan too was expensive and it was Krunal who arrested the Knight Riders progress with a double strike in the fifth over of the innings that packed off Gambhir (19) and one-down Robin Uthappa (4).
Bumrah came back into the attack and dismissed the dangerous-looking Lynn, trapping the batsman leg before when he played across the line.
The early momentum gone, Harbhajan Singh was brought into the attack after eight overs and the offie, who was surprisingly omitted for tactical reasons in the away lung-opener against Rising Pune Supergiant, kept the batsmen quiet in his first two overs.
Krunal picked up his third wicket later by inducing his Baroda teammate Yusuf Pathan to loft the ball to long off for his brother Hardik to accept a straight-forward catch which left KKR at 87 for four after 12 overs.
The 100 came up in the 14th over before Surya Yadav struck Harbhajan for two fours in the bowler s last over to spoil his figures a bit.
The well-set Pandey lofted Bumrah over long on for his second six and then hit him for a four too in the 16th over before Malinga returned to the attack and picked up Yadav with his first ball, caught by Kieron Pollard at long on, and followed it up with a similar dismissal of Chris Woakes in his final over.
But Pandey remained till the end and smacked the ball around especially in the final over bowled by McClenaghan.
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