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Champs pip Challengers

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Spinner Sunil Narine proved to be the stand-out performer with a four-wicket haul as Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore by...

Spinner Sunil Narine proved to be the stand-out performer with a four-wicket haul as Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore by five wickets here on Sunday.A Opting to field, KKR restricted RCB to 115 for nine, and then chased down the modest target with four balls to spare at the JSCA International Stadium Complex. Narine finished with impressive figures of four for 22 off his four overs and there were two wickets apiece for Jacques Kallis and Lakshmipathy Balaji. Kallis also top-scored for the 'hosts', playing a responsible knock of 41 off 45 balls. Manoj Tiwary made 24 off 27 balls. After doing a good job with the ball, KKR were dealt an early blow as Manvinder Bisla was sent back by Ravi Rampaul in their innings' first over. Gambhir and Kallis steadied KKR with a 31-run partnership for the second wicket. Playing according to the situation, the two experienced pros relied on the ones and twos, besides hitting boundaries occasionally.A In the fourth over bowled by Abhimanyu Mithun, the KKR skipper scored three successive fours -- all through the off-side, with the first one almost going all the way for a maximum. However, what was turning out to be a promising stand, was cut short as R Vinay Kumar induced a thick outside edge off the blade of Gambhir for Chris Gayle, the lone slip fielder, to pounce on to the offering. Yusuf Pathan arrived, and straightaway got into the groove, hitting Murali Kartik's tossed up delivery for a massive six over long-on.A Tiwary followed Kallis as the batsman played Vinay Kumar towards cover for Virat Kohli to pull off a difficult catch. Needing five off the last over, Ryan ten Doeschate sealed the issue in KKR's favour with a boundary. Earlier, on a slow wicket, RCB struggled to score freely. Chris Gayle found the going tough, hitting just one four and a six for his 33, before being stumped off Narine's bowling. AB de Villiers was the next best scorer with a 22-ball 28. A Apart form Gayle, Narine accounted for the wickets of Saurabh Tiwary (1), Rampaul (0) and Mithun (2). Gambhir began with spinner Sachitra Senanayake and Balaji and the two bowlers provided a superb start by giving away just 16 runs in the first five overs. Brief Scores: RCB 115 for nine (Chris Gayle 33, AB de Villiers 28, Sunil Narine 4/22) lost to KKR 116 for five (Jacques Kallis 41, Manoj Tiwary 24, R Vinay Kumar 2/17).
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