Hussey steers Kolkata Knight Riders to another win

April 20th, 2008 - 10:58 pm ICT by admin  

(Match Report)

Kolkata, April 20 (IANS) Riding on a brilliant 38 by Australian David Hussey, Kolkata Knight Riders registered their second successive win as they defeated Hyderabad Deccan Chargers by five wickets in a nail biting finish in the Indian Premier League (IPL) here Sunday. Chasing a target of 111 set by the visitors, Knight Riders romped home with one over to spare at the Eden Gardens pitch that troubled both teams and kept the spectators on their toes. The home side finished with 112 for five wickets in 19 overs.

New Zealand opener Brendan McCullum, after his brilliant century in Bangalore Friday, failed to do an encore and give a good start to the Knight Riders and departed for just five runs. Australia captain Ricky Ponting also followed him soon after without opening his account.

Wriddhiman Shaha (10) and captain Sourav Ganguly (14) tried to steady the innings as the odd ball popped up from the good length to trouble the batsmen regularly. But it was Hussey, who came in at 21 for three, along with Ganguly stitched together a crucial 47-run partnership to help register their first win on home turf.

After defeating Bangalore Royal Challengers, this was the Knight Riders’ first tie at home and the stage was set by Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan for his Knight Riders. He got a host of celebrities to cheer for the team. Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka and brother-in-law Robert Vadra were also seen enjoying the game.

Also present at the stadium were the team co-owners actress Juhi Chawla, film director Karan Johar, actors Rani Mukerji, Viveik Oberoi, Mallaika Arora Khan, Arjun Rampal and music composers Bappi Lahiri and Vishal-Shekhar.

Everything seemed to be going right for Kolkata when power failure spoiled the party. The hosts were 89 for five in 16.4 overs when two of the towers went off at exactly 7 p.m. David Hussey was batting on 21 and Laxmi Ratan Shukla was yet to open his account, with a close finish was on the cards.

After 25 minutes the power breakdown was rectified and Knight Riders now needed 20 from 17 balls. But Hussey didn’t panic and kept his cool. A six and a four off the last two ball of the 18th over from Scott Styris more or less sealed the win.

In the last ball of the 19th over, Hussey lifted spinner Pragyan Ojha for a huge six straight down the ground to finish off the match in style.

Earlier in the day, the mighty batting line-up of Deccan Chargers was brought down to its knees on a dusty track and the visitors crumbled for 110. Andrew Symonds fought the lone battle with a fine 32, but the rest of the big names seemed clueless against the uneven bounce that surprised them.

After winning the toss, Chargers’ skipper V.V.S. Laxman had no hesitation in batting first. But after just two overs, his decision seemed to have backfired as the pitch started cracking with dust coming off every time the ball hit the surface.

Pacer Ishant Sharma got deliveries to rise from the good length and his fearsome pace only added to the batsmen’s agony.

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