Yusuf Pathan and Andre Russell launched an incredible counter-attack after the fall of quick wickets in the start to guide Kolkata Knight Riders to an entertaining five-wicket victory against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Monday.
Chasing a challenging 186-run target set by RCB, Yusuf smashed an unbeaten 60 off only 29 balls to guide KKR home with five balls remaining.
Russell’s 24-ball 39 included four towering sixes and was crucial in KKR’s victorious chase which propelled them to second spot in the points table.
On the other hand, RCB's misery continue as they are left reeling at second last position after losing their fifth game out of seven matches.
The Knight Riders were off to a poor start losing their inform opener Robin Uthappa (1) to Stuart Binny. With wickets falling at top of the order, Gautam Gambhir played well for his 29-ball 37 runs.
Chris Lynn managed only 15 runs, while Manish Pandey (8) also failed in his return match after recovering from chicken pox
Joining hands at 69 for 4 after 10.1 overs, both Yusuf and Russell launched a spectacular onslaught to put immense pressure on RCB bowlers.
Earlier, RCB has posted a competitive 185 for seven after skipper Virat Kohli and KL Rahul struck half centuries.
From 131 for four at the end of 17th over, RCB went past 180 with Shane Watson (34), Sachin Baby (16) and Stuart Binny (16) playing fine cameos. Watson's 21-ball knock was studded with five boundaries and a six.
Binny smashed two sixes and a boundary in the last over while facing only four balls.
Umesh Yadav, who was allowed to continue despite bowling two beamers, was hit for 20 runs in the last over and finished with expensive figures of 1-56 in four overs. Umesh gave away 23 runs in the 18th over, which turned things around for RCB.
Sent into bat after the coin landed in favour of KKR captain Gautam Gambhir, Royal Challengers Bangalore rode on a 84-run second wicket partnership between Kohli and Rahul to lay the foundation.
Young Rahul smashed six boundaries and two sixes during his 32-ball knock, while Kohli found the fence four times while facing 44 balls at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Kohli and Rahul then got together to steady the innings by playing sensibly. Rahul hit Piyush Chawla and Sunil Narine for sixes, while Kohli preferred to play along the ground.
However, while trying to shift gears and accelerate the run rate, Rahul got out to Chawla in the 12th over with RCB at 92 for two.
Earlier, Royal Challengers Bangalore were dealt a blow as Chris Gayle, playing in his first game since returning from the West Indies after the birth of his daughter, gave away his wicket by going for an extravagant shot against Morne Morkel.
The South African pace ace got a bit of extra bounce that unsettled Gayle who mistimed a pull shot to give an easy catch to wicketkeeper Robin Uthappa. Just before getting out, Gayle hit Morkel straight down the ground for a six.
AB de Villiers (4) failed to get going as he was trapped by Chawla. Kohli, who got a reprieve when Gambhir dropped a sitter off the bowling of Morkel, got out in the very next ball while trying to force the pace.
Morkel (2-28) and Chawla (2-32) were the most successful bowlers for KKR, while Narine (0-45 in 4 overs) was expensive.
The defeat again highlights the inefficiency of RCB's bowling line-up which again failed to defend a challenging 180-plus target.