The Knights from Eden slay the Lions in theirs

Yesterday night was the final clash of this year’s DLF IPL, which was between the Kolkata Knight Riders and the Chennai Super Kings. CSK, who had the psychological advantage of both playing in their den and the fact that they were the defending champs. They would have felt even better as they won the toss and elected to bat and put on a sturdy total of 190-3, a total which is not easily scalable even in regular league matches, let alone a final; but the Knights pulled it off. One would have easily thought that CSK had won the game when Ben Hilfenhaus knocked over KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir with just 3 on the board. And as we’ve seen in a lot of the games  KKR has played, If Gambhir falls, the rest of the KKR batting collapses. However, that did not happen today. The Super Kings were taken by surprise as they witnessed an offensive counterattack by the KKR batsmen Manvinder Bisla and Jacques Kallis. They started slowly, playing out Hilfenhaus for ones and the odd two; and nobody thought this could possibly be a KKR win until Albie Morkel arrived to bowl his second over. He was given the stick by Bisla, who hit him for four boundaries in that over. After that nearly every one of CSK’s bowlers were looking tame in front of these two men in form. Ravichandran Ashwin, who tamed Chris Gayle in last year’s IPL, was struck for two sixes in his first three balls by Bisla, Dwane Bravo, probably CSK’s find of the tournament, was taken for 13 in his first over, and CSK’s unsung hero vs MI, Shadab Jakati was taken for 38 his 4 overs. Nobody was able to stop these to from cruising at 9 an over. Then finally the breakthrough came. Albie Morkel got his revenge as he tempted Bisla to play a false shot that saw his fall on. He made a quick Suddenly KKR were under the thumb as they lost Laxmi Ratan Shukla (4) and Yusuf Pathan (1) in quick time, but Kallis’ stability at the other end ensured that they never lost their way. In the 18th over, however, Hilfenhaus took Kallis out, but the required run rate was now too low. He would have got the wicket of Shakib Al Hasaan as well, but unfortunately for Hilfenhaus it was a no-ball. So Shakib and Manoj Tiwari continued on their merry way and Tiwari struck the winning hits that took KKR to the cup for the first time ever. Manvinder Bisla was named Man Of The Match for his efforts. Actually the way Bisla got to play this game was the result of a chain reaction started by the injury of fast-medium bowler Laxmipathy Balaji, for which Gambhir had no choice but to bring in Brett Lee to keep their team balance, so that meant that Brendon McCullum had to sit out to satisfy the four-overseas-players rule, for which Bisla had to play as a keeper. In the first innings, CSK began to daunt the KKR bowlers as openers Murali Vijay and Micheal Hussey began things very well, as they already had accumulated 54 in the powerplay at 9 an over. It was only in the 10th over, with 87 on the board, that Rajat Bhatia cleaned up Vijay. That did not worry the Super Kings too much, though. Hussey simply partnered with Suresh Raina, as they continued to cruise. Later in the innings Kallis took out the birthday boy Hussey, but he had already done the job with his 50. Then Raina and skipper MS Dhoni took the assault back to KKR, as they scored 30 of the last 3, which included a few shots of mystery bowler Sunil Narine, playedby Raina. All of the KKR bowlers suffered, but Lee (none for 42 in 4 overs) and Sunil Narine (none for 37 in 4 overs) which was dissappointing, especially from Narine; but their brilliant batting made up for it. Cheers 😉

KKR- Champions DLF IPL 2012