Jayawardene ton guides Kings XI to second IPL winApril 4th, 2010 - 9:54 pm ICT by IANS
Kolkata, April 4 (IANS) Sri Lankan Mahela Jayawardene cracked an unconquered 59-ball 110 to lead Kings XI Punjab to an emphatic eight-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL) here Sunday.
Jayawardene, who returned to the team in place of an injured Shaun Marsh, hit 14 boundaries and three sixes and capitalised on one ‘life’ to script a 98-run second wicket stand with skipper Kumara Sangakkara (38) to set the stage for the bottom placed side’s second victory in the tournament after four consecutive defeats.
Replying to the Knight Riders’ challenging total of 200 for three, the visitors cantered to 204 for two with ten balls to spare, as Yuvraj Singh played a cameo (33 not out of 16 balls; 2×4, 3×6) towards the end to hasten the hosts’ fifth defeat in nine games.
Jayawardene then completed the game in style, picking up two consecutive fours off medium pacer Jaidev Unadkat to disappoint a packed Eden Gardens crowd.
Jayawardene became the second Sri Lankan after Sanath Jayasurya to get a Twenty20 hundred, and third batsman in this edition of the IPL, when he took a couple of Shane Bond to reach the three-figure mark off 56 balls.
Murali Kartik must be cursing himself for having dropped the Sri Lankan when he was on 51. Jayawardene tried to steer compatriot Angelo Mathews and virtually spooned it to Kartik, who failed to hold on to the offering.
Earlier, opener Chris Gayle blasted a 42-ball 88 as the Knight Riders piled up an imposing total.
Gayle plundered eight sixes and six boundaries and also put on 101 for the second wicket with Manoj Tiwary (35). Skipper Sourav Ganguly scored 36 as the hosts set Kings XI Punjab a tough asking rate of 10.05 runs per over.
Opening with Gayle, Ganguly started off in style with two boundaries in the first over, as the star duo picked up boundaries in every over to bring up the 50 in 5.2 overs. Ganguly, however, departed a little later, giving a return catch to Ravi Bopara.
Gayle and Tiwary then played cleverly, picking up singles and twos, with Gayle hitting the occasional fours and a six off Ramesh Powar as Knight Riders reached 89 for one in the 12th over.
What followed for the next few minutes was a gale from Gayle’s bat. The West Indies batsman carried out a murderous assault on Bopara, hitting him four consecutive sixes as the 13th over produced 33 runs.
Gayle dispatched pacer Irfan Pathan for two boundaries in the next over, before lifting leg spinner Piyush Chowla out of the ground twice as he moved from 30 to 80 in only ten deliveries.
Young South African pacer Juan Theron finally ended Gayle’s run deluge with a low full toss, a ball after the West Indies player sent him out of the ground. Gayle tried to again hit the bowler out of the ground, but ended up giving a catch to the deep.
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