Thursday May 18, 2017
BANGALORE: Kolkata Knight Riders face Mumbai Indians for a shot at a final berth in the Indian Premier League after Gautam Gambhir powered his team to a win over Sunrisers Hyderabad early Thursday.
Rain reduced the second innings of the eliminator match to six overs, with KKR given a 48-run target under the Duckworth-Lewis method.
Gambhir remained unbeaten with a top-score of 32, leading his team to a seven-wicket victory with four balls to spare.
Australian Nathan Coulter-Nile won man of the match award for three wickets earlier on Wednesday in an inspired bowling performance against the Sunrisers.
Nile and other KKR bowlers, particularly Sunil Narine and Umesh Yadav, restricted Hyderabad to 128-7 in their 20 overs on a seemingly slow track.
Hyderabad skipper David Warner top-scored with 37 runs but all Hyderabad batsmen struggled to get quick runs against KKR´s measured performance on the field.
Showers interrupted even before KKR could begin their reply, shortening the second innings which only started past midnight, early Thursday.
Sunrisers´ began their bowling performance on a high, with Indian seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar taking two wickets, including a run out, in the very first over of KKR´s reply.
Kolkata also lost Robin Uthappa in the next over before Gambhir, one of the most consistent performers this IPL season, took charge of the team´s run chase.
KKR face Mumbai on Friday for a chance to play Rising Pune Supergiant.
Since its debut in 2008 the shorter-format league has evolved into India´s most popular sporting event, filling stadiums and attracting TV audiences well beyond that enjoyed by Test and one-day competitions in the cricket-mad country.