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Knight Riders stop Punjab’s winning run

13th April 2017
Riding Gautam Gambhir’s 72 off 49 balls Kolkata Knight Riders beat Kings XI Punjab by 8 wickets in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match today at the Eden Gardens Kolkata.
Maxwell led Kings XI, put to bat, managed 170 for 9 playing 20 overs, which was chased down by the Knights within 16.3 over with 8 wickets remaining. KKR Skipper, Gautam Gambhir (72) and Manish Pandey (26) remained unbeaten at the crease. This was also Gautam Gambhir’s 33rd half-century in IPL.
Earlier, after Punjab getting good start with a 53 runs opening partnership between Hashim Amla (25) and Manan Vohra (28), Piyush Chawla did the trick for KKR by breaking through Vohra's defence, when Punjab lost their first wicket at 53.
Thereafter, KKR pulled the contest back, while Punjab started losing wickets at a regular interval, getting reduced to 98 for 4. The fourth wicket to fall was their Skipper Galin Maxwell, being trapped by Umesh Yadav at 25.
The fourth wicket stand of 55 runs between   Wriddhiman Saha (25) and David Miller (28) took Punjab to 155, before Umesh doing the trick again to bag Miller’s wicket. However, at the end Kings XI managed to put up a fighting 170 for 9 playing their full quota.
Umesh Yadav, who was playing his first game for KKR returning from an injury, remained the pick of the bowlers, taking 4 for 33.
Coming out to bat, KKR looked in full control of the match, by scoring 76 in less than six over, when their first wicket Sunil Narine fell, hitting a quick 37 off 18 balls. Sending Narine to open was more like a trick by KKR that worked in the team's favour while chasing a fighting total.
When Robin Uthappa fell at 26, reducing KKR to 116 for 2, the home team already looked to have an absolute control over the match. From that point they just needed to bat easily, requiring only 54 more runs to win in 10 overs and 8 wickets still in hand.
The match finally came to an end in 16th over, leading to few power hitting by Manish Pande, scoring 25 off 16 balls with skipper Gautam Gambhir batting at the other side.

Sayan Banerjee