Kolkata: Ravindra Jadeja came up with a brilliant allround display to help the resurgent Kochi Tuskers Kerala (KTK) halt Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) three-match winning run with a narrow six-run victory in a low-scoring Indian Premier League (IPL) clash here on Wednesday.
Jadeja was the star for the Kochi team as he scored 29 from 18 balls to help his team post 132 for seven and then scalped two wickets as the Tuskers restricted the Knight Riders to 126 for nine at the Eden gardens here.
Put into bat, Kochi had a flying start, thanks to the in-form pair of Brendon McCullum and Mahela Jayawardene but the Knight Riders restricted them to 132 for seven with a fine bowling effort by Yusuf Pathan (3/20) and Shakib-Al-Hasan (3/28).
Defending the total, the Tuskers bowlers Jadeja (2/25), Rudra Pratap Singh (2/25) did a tidy job and was supported well by their bowling colleagues as Kochi halted Kolkata’s three-match winning run at the Eden Gardens here.
With 12 runs required from 26 balls, RP conceded 12 runs from his fourth and penultimate over of the match to bring the equation to 14 from the last one.
But with R Vinay Kumar (1/21) bowling his slower deliveries accurately, it proved to be an uphill task in the end as the Tuskers notched their third straight victory.
Tuskers now joins Mumbai Indians and the Knight Riders with six points each but the hosts retained the pole position by means of net run-rate.
Chasing a modest 133, Knight Riders needed to play sensible cricket but the hosts made a mess of the seemingly low score getting themselves out one by one.
Three quick wickets from three overs -- in the form of Jacques Kallis (6), Gautam Gambhir (3) and Manvinder Bisla (16) -- put Knight Riders in a spot of bother.
R. Vinay Kumar, RP and Jadeja took one each as Knight Riders were 37/3 after the first powerplay.
Knight Riders batting mainstay Kallis became victim of a Vinay Kumar short ball, while in a space of five balls Gambhir saw his middle stump shattered by his former India teammate RP Singh.
In the next over, Jadeja had Bisla castled to set the stage for the spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan to capitalize.
Brought in place of Thisara Perera, Muralitharan returned with one wicket but he held the Knight Riders batsmen together giving away 18 runs from his four overs quota.
Just when the duo of Tiwary and Morgan were looking to set the platform, a fine fielding effort by skipper Mahela Jayawardene ran Morgan out to break their 36-run partnership from 38 balls.
However, undeterred Tiwary hit two fluent boundaries off RP but only to see Shakib getting bowled at the other end in the same over.