Eighteen-year-old medium pacer from Assam, Sujay Tarafdar and South African speedster Nantie Hayward bowled a devastating opening spell here tonight as Kolkata Tigers made it to the semifinals defeating Inzamam-ul-Haq's Hyderabad Heroes by 53 runs in a must-win match of the ICL Twenty20 tournament.
At the end of league matches, the Tigers, who finished on top of the table, will face Chennai Superstars on December 14 while local favourites Chandigarh Lions will meet Delhi Jets the following day.
Mumbai Champs and Hyderabad Heroes, the two teams led by Brian Lara and Inzamam respectively, failed to make it.
Defending a total of 168, the Tigers pace battery struck in the very first over when Hayward had Heroes wicketkeeper-opener Ibrahim Khaleel bowled for 1.
However, it was the wickets of opener P Shashank Nag (2), Nicky Boje (4) and Chris Harris (0) by man-of-the-match Tarafdar in the second over of the innings which tilted the scales in Tigers' favour, with the scoreboard reading 7-4.
Abhishek Jhujhuwala pulled off a single-handed diving catch to send Boje back to the pavilion. Though Inzamam (13) tried to show some resistance, Hayward struck again having him lbw.
Even a valiant fightback by all-rounders Abdul Razzaq (37) and Azhar Mahmood (25) could not prevent the inevitable.
Both were removed by Lance Klusener when they were trying to accelerate and once Razzaq got out in the 14th over it was all over for the Heroes who were all out for 115.
Tigers, who were put in to bat, had former England batsman Darren Maddy scoring a run-a-ball 32 and his partner Deep Dasgupta (13) being a bit unlucky to find a direct hit from Inzamam to be run out.
Skipper Craig Macmillan, who came at the fall of Abhishek Jhunjhuwala (run out on 33), struck a scintillating 50,
studded with four sixes, before Razzaq got him.
Klusener (24), who was looking dangerous, was removed by some excellent fielding by Kiwi all-rounder Chris Harris, who was also instrumental in Jhunjhuwala's run out.
Had it not been for Razzaq's efforts, Tigers could have posted a total close to 200. The Pakistani gave just 13 runs in his four overs.
On the other hand, PK Reddy gave away runs freely (46 in four overs) with Macmillan feasting on the weak attack.