Cricket Article

Yusuf Pathan's all-round show takes Kolkata to win over Pune

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There was nothing in it for the Pune Warriors India but a win would have helped them end on a happier note apart from assisting Sourav Ganguly to script a remarkable comeback against a side which he had led and now beaten.Man of the match>

Unfortunately, neither Sourav Ganguly and nor his Pune Warriors India did much to ensure that they could even come close to challenging the Kolkata Knight Riders in what was the 65th game of the Indian Premier League at the Dr. DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai. The Knight Riders were set an easy 119 to win the game and got there in 16.4 overs for the loss of three wickets only.

Kolkata chose to field first after they had won the toss and that allowed the Warriors to get moving first. After Manish Pandey had got the side off to a flier with two boundaries off the first over from Brett Lee, Jesse Ryder’s attempt to hoick the off-spinner Yusuf Pathan only ended in his dismissal.

Pandey also did not last too long after that, as the other spinner in the side, Iqbal Abdulla had the better of him through some amazing thinking. There was a ball that turned across the batsman before he slipped a quicker one and the batsman was caught plumb in front of the wickets.

The two early wickets and the slow batting of Ganguly meant that the side had gone into the end of the Powerplay overs at only 29/2 and in some strife. Callum Ferguson, who had come in at the one-drop position looked good for his 16, but a hugely-spinning top from Shakib al Hasan had him stumped. Soon after that, Ganguly hit a six but got out for 18 – another of the starts wasted – as the side slumped to 71/4 in the 13th over.

With none of the remaining batsmen, Robin Uthappa, Yuvraj Singh and Sachin Rana getting anywhere close to sealing one end off, the side was restricted to 118/7 in their 20 overs – a rather difficult score to defend.

Sreevats Goswami, who had come into the side in place of Mark Boucher made six but edged behind to Alfonso Thomas. Unfortunately for the Warriors that was the only success the side had for a long time. By the time Manoj Tiwary had got into an argument with Ryder after being cleaned up by B Kumar, the team had upped their run-rate to seven an over.

Yusuf Pathan smacked a six and three fours and in company of his captain Gautam Gambhir (54 not-out) guided the side to an easy win. Pathan’s two wicket haul and the 25-ball 29 won him the man of the match award.