Mahela leads Punjab to last-ball win over Kolkata
Mahela Jayawardene struck an unbeaten 52 to guide Kings XI Punjab to
a nail-biting six-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders in the
Indian Premier League here on Sunday.
The Sri Lankan batsman hit seven fours in his 41-ball knock as Punjab
surpassed Kolkata’s competitive 153-3 in a last-ball finish at St.
Needing seven from the final over by Kolkata paceman Ajit Agarkar,
Jayawardene hit a four while Irfan Pathan (19 not out) fetched the
winning runs for Punjab.
The victory helped Punjab climb to the second position in the points
table while the struggling Kolkata continued to languish at the bottom
with their sixth defeat from eight matches.
The Yuvraj Singh-led Punjab have now won four of their seven matches
in this Twenty20 competition.
Punjab were off to a disappointing start with Ishant Sharma claiming
Kumar Sangakkara for a duck in the first over but a slew of dropped
catches and poor fielding did Kolkata no favours.
Simon Katich (34) was dropped on five by Chris Gayle while debutant
Sunny Sohal also thrived on a grassed chance to make a fine 26-ball 25
Kolkata’s innings was built around Brad Hodge who top-scored with an
unbeaten 70 off just 43 balls and shared key partnerships with Sourav
Ganguly (22) and Morne van Wyk (18 not out). The Australian smashed 10
fours and a six in a late assault that saw Kolkata put on 101 runs in
their last 10 overs.
Leg-spinner Piyush Chawla was the most successful bowler with 2-27
from four overs.
Kolkata 153-3 in 20 overs (B. Hodge 70 not out, S. Ganguly 22; P.
Chawla 2-27). Punjab 154-4 in 20 overs (M. Jayawardene 52 not out, S.
Katich 34, S. Sohal 25; I. Sharma 2-27)