May 01, 2016
By MI Media
It was a top of the table clash between the hosts Kolkata Knightriders and Gujarat Lions. The two teams were battling for superiority as the winner was going to get a two-point lead over the other. It was a crucial match where Suresh Raina won the toss and invited the hosts to bat first.
The way KKR started their innings, it felt like a deja vu of the Mumbai innings from just the previous match. KKR kept losing wickets upfront and their top order was back in no time. Gujarat new ball bowlers bowled beautifully to trouble the batsman with their swing and bounce. KKR skipper was the first one to go, followed by Manish Pandey in quick succession. GL bowlers got two more wickets by the end of power play, which left KKR reeling at 24-4. Yusuf Pathan and Shakib Al Hasan assessed the situation and played accordingly. They forged a partnership to lead KKR out of the precarious situation they were in, with a remarkable fightback. Pathan 63(41) and Shakib 66(49) put on a century stand, to take KKR's total to 158/4.
Off late the Gujarat Lions openers have not been giving the starts they were looking for. This time around the openers started well. Dwayne Smith got out against the run of events when Shakib foxed him with a flighted delivery which snuck past him to crash into the stumps. McCullum got out once again, trying to clear long on. Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik joined forces to lead the run chase. The two were in sublime touch as they slowly progressed towards their target. Skipper got out when he top edged a short ball, only to be caught at fine-leg. Karthik was finally dismissed after many missed opportunities when he failed to read a wrong one from Hogg. Aaron Finch and Ravindra Jadeja came in, to provide some late fireworks to win the game for the Lions. With this win Gujarat Lions ended their losing streak, and secured the top position.