Dire Delhi succumb to Kolkata pressure


The Kolkata Knight Riders got their IPL season off to a flying start as they easily defeated the Delhi Daredevils by nine wickets on Sunday, chasing down the 99 required inside 15 overs.

The Daredevils were unable to turn their past fortunes around, despite an influx of new players, as the experience of Gautam Gambhir's settled side proved too much at Eden Gardens.

Delhi's poor record in the IPL continued, as they were bundled out for less than 100 for the seventh time in their history, which is not a record a team wants to claim. The other seven teams have been out for double figures a combined 16 times.

They started off well though, with South Africa's Quinton de Kock and local Mayank Agarwal doing well in the first two overs, before the latter was out for nine, caught off Andre Russell's bowling.

De Kock followed soon afterwards for 17, also to 'Dre Russ', and his score ended up being the highest of the innings. The next best was 15 from Sanju Samson, while Chris Morris, who fetched a huge sum at auction, was out for 11.

Veteran Brad Hogg was the pick of the Kolkata bowlers, bagging three wickets as he used his vast experience in India to bamboozle the rookie Delhi line-up. Russell also claimed three scalps, while Piyush Chawla took two.

Kolkata's chase was relatively simple from the start, as India veterans Robin Uthappa and Gambhir quickly advanced the score into the 40s inside five overs, with little risk to their wickets.

The first and only wicket fell with the score on 69, somewhat against the run of play, as Uthappa tried one pull too many and hit the Amit Mishra delivery right to Morris on the boundary, out for 35.

This left skipper Gambhir and Manish Pandey to wrap the game up with plenty of time to spare. Gambhir was on 38 not out when the runs ran out, while Pandey had little to do and was on 15.