Kings XIP defeat wasteful Kolkata

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The Kings XI Punjab added another nail to the Kolkata Knight Riders' title defence, managing to defend a middling score despite a half century from Gautam Gambhir and a hat-trick by Sunil Narine.

The Kings XI Punjab added another nail to the Kolkata Knight Riders' title defence, managing to defend a middling score despite a half century from Gautam Gambhir and a hat-trick by Sunil Narine.

Adam Gilchrist's side recorded their third win out of five after scoring 157 for nine, thanks to a brisk death-overs cameo by Manpreet Gony. The Punjab bowlers did a superb job of defending their score, sharing the wickets between them as Kolkata reached 153 for nine.

The KXIP innings wasn't a sterling effort by any means, the highlight being the first hat-trick of the tournament for West Indies spinner Narine. He got rid of David Hussey Azhar Mahmood and Gurkeerat Singh in the 15th over, with the score on 99.

At that point, it looked like the score would fall well short of defendable, but Gony came in and blasted 23 runs off Narine's next over. scoring 42 off 18 balls before being bowled by Jacques Kallis, who took three wickets.

Kolkata's knock got off to a dire start when they lost Manvinder Bisla off the first ball, caught off Praveen Kumar behind the stumps. Kallis then departed with the score on two, leaving Gambhir and Eoin Morgan to rescue the knock.

The international pair went at a cracking pace and all looked well for the defending champs, and they put on a partnership of 104 runs. Gambhir then departed with his score on 60, and Morgan went 10 runs later for 47, and it all fell apart from there.

The middle and lower order were beyond useless, and though they managed to push the excitement to the final ball, where they needed five to win, Kumar kept his head and prevented a shot, leaving KKR near the bottom of the table.

Kings XI Punjab: A Gilchrist, Mandeep Singh, D Hussey, D Miller, Azhar Mahmood, M Vohra, Gurkeerat Singh, P Chawla, P Kumar, M Gony, P Awana

Kolkata Knight Riders: M Bisla, G Gambhir, J Kallis, Y Pathan, M Tiwary, E Morgan, R Bhatia, D Das, S Senanayake, S Narine, L Balaji

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