Tanvir restrict Riders to 147/8
Superb bowling by Sohail Tanvir and Munaf Patel restricted the Kolkota Knight Riders to 147/8 in their IPL match against the Rajasthan Royals at Eden Gardens in Kolkota on Tuesday.
Tanvir (3/26) and Patel (2/22) were in excellent form and the Knight Riders simply could not lift the run-rate efficiently to give the Royals a 160-run target in their 20 overs.
Patel did the early damage. He restricted the Knight Riders to 32/2 after 6 overs by claiming the wickets of Mohammad Hafeez (4) and his opening partner, Salman Butt (24, 20 balls, 5x4) in the power play phase.
Sourav Ganguly (32, 34 balls, 2x4, 1x6) used a more measured and laboured approach than usual by playing conservatively early on in the vain hope that he might cash in during the last five overs.
He was caught by Mohammad Kaif off Siddarth Trivedi when he tried to go for a big shot in the fifteenth over.
It was left to Debabrat Das to play the role of aggressor. Das succeeded for a while, by hitting the off-spinner Yusuf Pathan, and the leg-spinner Shane Warne for big sixes. He was offered a reprieve in the seventeenth over when Tanvir dropped a regulation catch at deep cover off Shane Warne.
In the next over, the unorthodox seam bowler Tanvir made amends for his shocking drop by bowling Das with a superb yorker for 31 (20 balls, 1x4, 2x6). Tanvir had Laxmi Shukla (15, 10 balls, 1x4, 1x6) caught by Swapnil Asnodka to reduce Kolkota to 123/6 after 18 overs.
Tanvir had almost single-handedly derailed the efforts by Kolkota to accelerate their innings.
The Knight Riders added 45 runs in their final five overs, but simply failed to clear the boundary ropes enough to satisfy their beleagured captain, Ganguly.
It is a must-win game of the erratic Knight Riders, as they need to win all three remaining games to assure a top-four spot. Another loss will diminish their chances.