Gambhir: No-one expected us to win it

India

Kolkata Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir was over the moon with his side's second Indian Premier League title, especially considering their poor start they had to the tournament.

Kolkata Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir was over the moon with his side's second Indian Premier League title, especially considering their poor start they had to the tournament.

The 2012 champs beat the Kings XI Punjab by three wickets on Sunday, chasing the 200 to win with three balls to spare, thanks to Manish Pandey's 94 off 50 balls. This game them nine wins in a row in the latter part of the event.

Gambhir said: "A lot of credit needs to go to the entire team. I think they were ready to absorb a lot of pressure, and where we were after the first seven games, not a lot of people must have given us that chance that we're going to be here, lifting the cup.

"It's been unbelievable belief and contribution from everyone. Guys really chipped in when they needed to."

Gambhir went on to say that they always had faith they could reach 200, especially after being on such a winning streak and qualifying for the play-offs with that win over The Sunrisers. In that game they had to chase 161 in 14.2 overs.

He added: "This is such a ground where it's difficult to defend. You always have that belief, if we can get the target to five overs, 50 or 60, we can always win the game, and I think Manish played an unbelievable knock, supported by Yusuf, and then guys chipped in, someone like Piyush hitting that very important six.

"I think 199, we always had the belief we're going to chase that down, especially after what we did against Sunrisers."

Meanwhile, Punjab skipper George Bailey was disappointed, but not overly so, considering how far the team came from previous editions. This was their first final, and he was magnanimous in defeat.

Bailey said: "That was certainly a game worthy of being called a final. It was outstanding. Hats off to Kolkata and in particular Manish.

"That was a hell of an innings. The amount of times we took a wicket and he hit the next ball for six, it was ballsy batting and it really paid off. Full congratulations to them, they really deserved it."

He added: "It's been an amazing ride. We've got a very, very special bunch of guys. We've got a wonderful feeling. We have had a wonderful tournament, and another great game tonight, so our boys can really hold their heads up very, very high."

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