Manvinder Bisla and Jacques Kallis struck half-centuries to help Kolkata Knight Riders win the Indian Premier League on Sunday, defeating two-time defending champion Chennai Super Kings by five wickets in a high-scoring final.
Opener Bisla plundered 89 off 48 balls with eight fours and five sixes, while South African Kallis hit 69 off 49 balls, as Kolkata scored 192-5 in 19.4 overs in reply to Chennai’s commanding 190-3.
Manoj Tiwary struck two successive boundaries off West Indian pacer Dwayne Bravo to help the visitors clinch a thrilling victory at the Chidambaram Stadium in their first appearance in an IPL final.
Wicketkeeper Bisla, who replaced New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum, was effortless in his shot execution as he put on 136 for the second wicket with Kallis after skipper and batting mainstay Gautam Gambhir fell to Australian pace man Ben Hilfenhaus in the opening over.
“I’m feeling very happy I played my part,” Bisla said. “Brendon is a class player, his record speaks for himself. ”
Bisla was dismissed by South African Albie Morkel, whom he had previously hit for four boundaries in one over, with Kolkata needing 52 off 32 balls. Bravo sent back Laxmi Rathan Shukla for 3 and when India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Yusuf Pathan for one, Kolkata were left needing 27 off 17.
Hilfenhaus dismissed Kallis, caught at sweeper-cover by Ravindra Jadeja in the penultimate over, and the contest boiled down the last over when Tiwary struck the vital runs.
“Only one word comes in mind again: mission accomplished,” Kolkata skipper Gautam Gambhir said. “I thought whenever the situation came, the guys would stand up. This one is for Kolkata. Chasing 191 against the defending champions in their backyard shows the character of Bisla.”
Earlier, Suresh Raina (73) and Australian Michael Hussey (54) helped Chennai make a positive start after opting to bat first.
Hussey put on 87 for the opening wicket with Murali Vijay (42) and 73 with Raina as the second wicket pair tore into the Kolkata attack on a pitch that played true.
Hussey, who struck four fours and two sixes, put the reverse sweep to good effect against the spinners as he anchored the innings in a spectacular fashion.
Raina plundered off-spinner Pathan for 16 runs in one over and brought up his fifty and the team’s 150 with a six off Sunil Narine, the talented spinner from the West Indies who was declared player-of-the-season.
“I’m happy with our performance,” Chennai skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni said. “Cricket is a game of plus ten, minus ten. It is always like that. Under the conditions, we batted well. I thought the ball started coming on slightly better in the second half. Bisla and Kallis got the partnership Kolkata needed.”
Kolkata Knight Riders 192-5 (Manvinder Bisla 89, Jacques Kallis 69; Ben Hilfenhaus 2-25) def.Chennai Super Kings 190-3 (Suresh Raina 73, Michael Hussey 54, Murali Vijay 42).