Pune, May 19 (IANS): Kolkata Knight Riders cruised into the play-offs in style, beating Pune Warriors by 34 runs in their last league encounter of the Indian Premier league (IPL) at the Subroto Roy Sahara Stadium here Saturday.
Knight Riders qualified as the second-placed side and will now play toppers Delhi in Qualifier 1. In the eliminator, Mumbai Indians will be facing either defending champions Chennai Super Kings or Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The win was also Knight Riders’ second in the season against Pune Warriors, having beaten them in the much-hyped home-leg by seven runs as well.
At Pune, however, it was a difficult track to bat on and after skipper Gautam Gambhir opted to bat, Knight Riders managed a modest 136 for four in 20 overs. Shakib Al Hasan was the top scorer with 42 while Brendan McCullum made 41.
Chasing 137, the Pune Warriors fared miserably, losing batsmen at regular intervals, and finished at 102 for eight in 20 overs. Jesse Ryder was the top scorer with 22.
The Pune Warriors batsmen struggled against the slow bowlers of the Knight Riders, who hardly gave any room to the hosts. Left-arm spinner Hasan bagged two wickets, including the prized scalp of Warriors skipper Sourav Ganguly (5), and gave away just 18 runs from his four overs. The former Bangladesh captain was also adjudged as Man of the Match for his all-round show.
Yusuf Pathan also bagged two wickets, giving away 12 runs, while West Indies’ mystery spinner Sunil Narine was again at his miserly best giving away just 15 runs for one wicket from his four overs.