Kolkata: Rohit Sharma’s spectacular 60-ball 109 stalled Kolkata’s seven match winning streak. The right-hander became the eight Indian to score an IPL ton and added 167 runs for the second wicket with Hershelle Gibbs which helped Mumbai Indians comprehensively defeat Kolkata Knight Riders by 27 runs at the Eden Gardens.
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It was a slow wicket and Sharma’s inning was special in the manner he crafted his shots all across the ground without any hesitation. Gibbs began the Mumbai innings on a watchful note as he scored just one single off the first over. He smashed Lee for three boundaries in the next over. Tendulkar perished in the third over as he was beaten by a flighted delivery and was stumped. Little did Kolkata know that they won’t be able to pick another wicket in the entire innings.
It was a slow track and yet Sharma managed to score some fantastic shots all across the ground. Gibbs who was aggressive earlier in the innings played the role of an anchor and gave most of the strike to Sharma who was striking the ball extremely well. Gibbs remained unbeaten on 66 from 58.
Most of Kolkata bowlers were very expensive and their trump card Sunil Narine was the only one with respectable figures along with Shakib. Narine gave 28 runs in his four overs, ten of which came off the last two balls which were smashed for a boundary and a six by Gibbs.
Kolkata got off to a disastrous start as skipper Gambhir was bowled by Munaf Patel off the third ball and Manvinder Bisla too perished in the second over. Kallis and Manoj Tiwary added 57 runs for the third wicket and Tiwary was out in the tenth over as a result of the increasing run-rate. Kallis (79 from 60) and Yusuf Pathan (40 from 31) added 91 runs for the fourth wicket but they could not find boundaries at regular intervals which cost them the match.
Mumbai would be very happy with the way Gibbs played as they have been struggling with their opening stand. It was a comprehensive win by the Mumbai Indians who in spite of being one of the favourites did not live up to the expectations so far.
First Published: Saturday, May 12, 2012, 15:05