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March 30, 2008
Kolkata Tigers 142 for 4 (Klusener 62*, Dasgupta 35) beat Delhi Giants (Avishka Gunawardene 35, Mishra 27, Chandana 3-15, Shibsagar 2-15) by one run
The Kolkata Tigers squeezed past the Delhi Giants in Gurgaon to move into the semi-finals of the ongoing Indian Cricket League tournament. Lance Klusener carried his bat through for the Tigers, before the spinners choked the Giants to claw out a thrilling one-run win.
In a virtual quarter-final, Craig McMillan chose to bat, and the Tigers' openers - Deep Dasgupta and Klusener - gave their team the upper hand with a 50-run stand in seven overs. Dasgupta fell for 35 off 21 balls, but Klusener anchored the innings with an unbeaten run-a-ball 62.
However, despite having wickets in hand, the Tigers could manage only 142; for the Giants, Shane Bond gave away only 15 runs in 3.4 overs before he was taken off the attack for bowling two beamers.
Avishka Gunawardene and Monish Mishra blazed away during the Giants' reply; after six overs, they were going at ten an over, and with nine wickets in hand. However, the Tigers cut down the run-rate in the next few overs, with spinners Upul Chandana and Shibsagar Singh scalping five wickets in six overs to leave the Giants stuttering at 105 for 6 after 16 overs.
Chandana conceded only 15 for three wickets off his four overs, while left-arm bowler Shibsagar took two wickets for the same number of runs in three overs. It finally came down to 13 off the final over. Klusener added to the drama by bowling a no-ball on the penultimate ball - Bond ran two after holing out to deep midwicket, and smacked the free hit that followed over cover to make it three off one.
They could manage only one leg-bye though, as the Tigers pulled off another nail-biting win, having pulled off a stunning one-run win over the Mumbai Champs in their first game of the tournament. They will face the in-form Lahore Badshahs in the semi-final on April 3, while the other semi-final will be contested between the Chennai Superstars, the defending champions, and the Hyderabad Heroes.
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