Kolkata Knight Riders v Kochi Tuskers Kerala, IPL 2011, Kolkata April 20, 2011

Kochi stifle Kolkata in hard-fought win

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Kochi Tuskers Kerala 132 for 7 (Jadeja 29, Yusuf 3-20, Shakib 3-28) beat Kolkata Knight Riders 126 for 9 (M Tiwary 46, RP Singh 2-25, Jadeja 2-25) by six runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Kochi Tuskers Kerala won a battle of attrition against Kolkata Knight Riders on a slow Eden Gardens pitch to move to the third position in the points table. The wicket did not play as low as it did in Kolkata's win against Rajasthan Royals, but it was just as slow, making it difficult for batsmen, and a delight for the spinners.

After Yusuf Pathan and Shakib Al Hasan had taken six wickets for 48 runs between them to restrict Kochi to 132, Kolkata's powerful batting line-up would have fancied the modest chase. But Kochi's own army of spinners - Muttiah Muralitharan, Ramesh Powar and Ravindra Jadeja - stifled the runs though they did not get as many wickets, and ensured the pressure got to the Kolkata batsmen, who fell six runs short.

As it transpired, the performance against the new-ball bowlers was the difference between the two sides. Kolkata's seamers conceded 26 for 0 in their first three overs, while Kochi's fast bowlers dismissed Jacques Kallis and Gautam Gambhir, while conceding only 20 runs in their first four overs. Kallis fell to the hook for the second time running, swinging Vinay Kumar straight to deep square leg. Gambhir played inside the line of a full delivery from RP Singh that straightened and uprooted middle stump as Kolkata began to stutter.

In the next over, Manvinder Bisla drove outside the line of a Jadeja delivery to lose his off stump. Manoj Tiwary and Eoin Morgan tried to work the ball around but the spinners were getting turn, and their different styles posed problems. Muralitharan, back after being left out for the previous two games, varied his flight and angle brilliantly, Jadeja fired the ball in, and Powar stuck to flight as he always does.

The mounting asking-rate led to Morgan charging out of his crease in the 13th over for a non-existent single, and Jayawardene threw down the middle stump with a direct hit. Tiwary took on RP Singh in the next over with consecutive boundaries, but Shakib missed a low full toss off the last ball to be bowled.

With 47 required from five overs, Jayawardene brought Powar back against Yusuf, who came in lower down the order, having injured himself taking a catch earlier. It was a make-or-break move, and Yusuf duly deposited the second delivery he faced beyond the wide long-on boundary. It was either foolhardy or brave of Powar to flight the next ball from round the wicket. It turned out to be the latter, as Yusuf went hard at it and got a top edge to short third man.

It was all up to Tiwary now. He had batted intelligently, picking up the singles and finding the boundaries when the rate climbed. But Jadeja saw him charge out, and had him stumped off a wide delivery down the leg side. Iqbal Abdulla and Rajat Bhatia refused to give up, taking 12 off RP Singh's last over, the 19th. But 14 off the last over proved to be too much, and Vinay Kumar throttled them with a succession of slower deliveries, to give Kochi the game.

The result had seemed unlikely when Kolkata's spinners restricted Kochi to 132. Gautam Gambhir had turned to spin after Brendon McCullum took Brett Lee for 15 runs in the third over. Right away, the left-arm spin of Abdulla and Shakib slowed the scoring-rate.

The first breakthrough came when a Shakib delivery seemed to stop on McCullum, who edged a half-hearted cut to point. The introduction of Yusuf in the eighth over brought more trouble for Kochi. Jayawardene, who had got away with a close leg-before shout earlier against Abdulla, was given out lbw while sweeping, even though replays showed he had gloved the ball onto the pad.

Yusuf struck in each of his next two overs. The slow nature of the pitch was further highlighted by Brad Hodge's dismissal, bowled off an inside edge after playing the pull too early. Yusuf then trapped Parthiv Patel leg-before with a quicker one. Having slipped from 49 for 0 to 65 for 4, Kochi depended on Jadeja to take them to a fighting total.

He responded by smacking a six each in overs 13, 14 and 15, before swinging Lee straight to long-on for 29. Balaji and Lee ensured that Kochi didn't get away, but 132 turned out to be just enough in the end.

Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • jorock on April 23, 2011, 8:29 GMT

    I think KTK is slowly making a mark in the IPL without much public knowledge . There were no huge performence from the KTK players but each & every one is contributing to their win. I think this team will go the distance because they are simple as well as spirited bunch of players.Now with Mahela to play all their group matches i think they have a gud chance. they defeated all the Giant teams in teh IPL team till now . Feel sorry for sree and Murali theye are star purchases of the team but not even oin the eleven. I am also impressed with Kings 11 great Captain under their wings i beleive deccan missed a trick by not selecting gilly in the team.GO KTK GO BEAT RAJASTAN NEXT !!!!!! i felt bad when the commentators are supporting KKR team all the way in the match and even after the match they were not given that appreciation what the MI got yesterday .Please dont discard the team according to stars in the team rather suppprt teams who is palying gud cricket .

  • dummy4fb on April 22, 2011, 0:18 GMT

    We all know that Jayawardene is a good captain and a great cricketer Man of the match is not given for captaincy. In that case you always give the MOM to the winning captasin. It was definitely a blunder for not giving Jadeja if you ask Jayawardene he would have said that Jadeja deserved it as he(Jayawardene) only did his job.

  • evenflow_1990 on April 21, 2011, 23:14 GMT

    if mahela had been indian, and jadeja sri lankan, this would not have been an issue. captains are priceless. good captaincy must be rewarded with awards.

  • bigwonder on April 21, 2011, 22:08 GMT

    So by most of the posters logic, almost all games should have captain as player of the match and only under extreme conditions should be given to other team members. Puh-lease, stop justifying stupid decisions.

  • dummy4fb on April 21, 2011, 14:33 GMT

    It should be better if Shakib play the betting position No. 4 as i think Morgan did not face spin attack easily all time so it should be better from Sakib ul Hasan then Ven ten (N't Morgan) play the betting position No. 5 next pathan and others

  • Madraskumar on April 21, 2011, 13:15 GMT

    Mahela was Man of the Match to his brilliant captancy to defend a total like 132

  • Quazar on April 21, 2011, 11:50 GMT

    Jadeja was absolutely the MoM, as others have noted below...pressure knock, vital wkts, economical bowling. Perhaps Mahela should have shared the award (+ prize money) with Jadeja, as Tendulkar did with Ambati Rayadu in Bangalore.

  • muabdulla on April 21, 2011, 11:26 GMT

    The 1 n only reason why Jayawrdena was selected as man of the match is Because of the great captaincy, great fielding and also batting(unfortunate dismissal)

  • kavzzz on April 21, 2011, 10:37 GMT

    what performance by mahela!!!! he shows his colours hw 2 defend lower total with due factor!!!!!

  • LALITHKURUWITA on April 21, 2011, 10:08 GMT

    Mahela was exceptinally good in handling the bowlers, field setting to defend 130. He also got the runout.

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