Kolkata Knight Riders 138-8 (Chris Lynn 49, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 3-26, Billy Stanlake 2-21, Shakib al Hasan 2-21) lost to Sunrisers Hyderabad 139-5 in 19 overs (Kane Williamson 50, Shakib al Hasan 27, Sunil Narine 2-17) by 5 wickets.
Captain Kane Williamson led from the front with a solid fifty as Sunrisers Hyderabad shrugged off initial wobble to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by five wickets in their IPL match in Kolkata on Saturday.
Williamson struck exactly fifty off 44 deliveries, hitting four boundaries and a six to help Sunrisers chase down the small target of 139 after the visiting side were reduced to 55 for 3 in the ninth over at the Eden Gardens.
Opener Wriddhiman Saha and Shakib Al Hasan made useful contributions of 24 and 27 respectively. Williamson’s 59-run stand with Shakib – who also took two wickets in KKR innings – for the fourth wicket eased the pressure on the Sunrisers as they reached 139 for 5 in 19 overs to notch up their third win on the trot.
The match briefly threatened to take a twist when Williamson was out in the 18th over and Sunrisers needing 20 from 2.4 overs but Yusuf Pathan (17 not out off 7 balls) had other ideas as he hit a four and a six in the 19th over bowled by Andre Russell to finish off the match with one over to spare.
The Sunrisers made a bright start to their chase with openers Shikhar Dhawan and Saha scoring 32 in three overs before both departed in quick succession.
Saha hit three fours in third over bowled by Mitchell Johnson to get 16 runs from that over. With Dhawan also, getting the boundaries with ease, it looked like for a while that the Sunrisers would chase down the target in quick time.
But the match turned on its head after the first wicket fell in the form of Saha in the fourth over. Sunil Narine delivered as soon as he was introduced in the fourth over as he induced Saha to poke at an away going delivery into the hands of Shubman Gill at point.
Williamson: “Three in a row feels good. The best part was the improvement from the previous game on another surface that required some adapting. Our bowlers were outstanding again but a real highlight tonight was our fielding.”
Karthik: “We don’t want to keep him batting at the top, we wan’t to keep it as a novelty. And send him when it’s required. 160-170 would have been a good target and I don’t think we batted as well as we should have.”
Man of the Match: Billy Stanlake