Rollicking Rohit sinks Knight Riders

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Rohit Sharma struck a remarkable century to set up a comfortable 27-run win for the Mumbai Indians over the Kolkata Knight Riders in Saturday's Indian Premier League clash at Eden Gardens.

Rohit Sharma struck a remarkable century to set up a comfortable 27-run win for the Mumbai Indians over the Kolkata Knight Riders in Saturday's Indian Premier League clash at Eden Gardens.

Sharma's unbeaten 109 from just 60 balls weighed in as the 22nd ton in the history of the tournament and was orchestrated during a record alliance alongside Herschelle Gibbs, who reached an unbeaten 66 from 58.

Gibbs, playing in his first match of the 2012 edition of the lucrative Twenty20 contest, and Rohit, eager to set himself apart from the nation's host of burgeoning talent, were unperturbed by the early departure of Sachin Tendulkar

The duo combined for a hefty 167-run unbroken stand – the third highest for any wicket in IPL cricket. Clubbing 19 boundaries and seven sixes between them, there was no end to the right-handers' dominance. Brett Lee faced the most expense, with the Australian fast bowler traveling for all of 44 runs from his four overs.

The prolific stand pushed Mumbai to an impressive total of 182 for one and, after the loss of both openers in the first eight balls of their pursuit, Kolkata were all but out of the contest entirely.

Jacques Kallis and Yusuf Pathan, for their 79 and 40 not out respectively, managed to keep the Knight Riders in the hunt until the 18th over, when Lasith Malinga effectively sealed the deal.

With 44 runs required from 12 balls, Kolkata sported an outside chance of victory. The Sri Lankan pace ace, though, soon rendered the equation impossible by firing in a string of yorkers to concede a mere six runs from the penultimate over of the clash.

Dwayne Smith then went through the motions of the final throes, snaring the prized scalp of Proteas veteran Kallis in the process.

Saturday's result saw Mumbai climb to third spot in the nine-team standings, while the Knight Riders franchise remained second.

Rohit, the eighth Indian to score an IPL century, was named Man of the Match.

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