Felix Austin | cricket20
Chris Gayle launched an astonishing blitz scoring 88 runs as the Kolkata Knight Riders ran riot against a disappointing Kings XI Punjab bowling attack at Eden Garden.
The Knight Riders made another solid start with skipper Sourav Ganguly facing most of the strike as he built the foundations of a good opening partnership with Chris Gayle.
Ganguly started off full of confidence after his marvellous innings against the Chargers on Thursday as he attacked Shalabh Srivasyava dispatching him for a four and then a massive six straight down the wicket in the 4th over.
With Ganguly in full flow Gayle was happy to play the supporting role scoring 16 run from 13 balls before Ganguly (36) was caught by Ravi Bopara off his own bowling to end the partnership with contributed 56 runs in the 7th over.
The loss of Ganguly slowed the Knight Riders down as the Kings XI bowlers gained the upper hand strangling Gayle and Manoj Tiwary as the runs dried up.
After 10 overs the Knight Riders were 69-1 but Gayle, who up and until this point had played a quite innings unleashed a brutal blitz which culminated in the West Indian smashing 4 consecutive sixes of the bowling of Bopara in the 12th over.
Gayle reached his half century as Bopara conceded an amazing 33 runs which included 7 extras scored off wides as the Englishman completed the most expensive over in IPL history.
The blitz by Gayle left the Kings XI demoralised as fielding mistakes started to creep into the game with Piyush Chawla the biggest culprit dropping Gayle off his own bowling after the West Indian had smashed another two big sixes earlier in Chawla’s over.
The Kings XI were now leaking runs all around the field conceding 70 runs in just 24 balls with Gayle seemingly on course to score an IPL century until he picked out Bopara at long off as he tried to hit Juan Theron for another towering six.
Although the Kings XI picked up the wicket of Gayle the damaged had already been done to allow Tiwary (35), Angelo Mathews (17) and David Hussey (11) to push the score up to 200-3.