ROBIN Uthappa’s brilliant half-century guided the Kolkata Knight Riders to a six-wicket victory with eight balls to spare over the Mumbai Indians in their IPL match at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack yesterday.
Uthappa showed pure class as he struck nine boundaries and three maximums in his innings of 80 off just 52 deliveries as Kolkata ended on 142 for four in reply to Mumbai’s 141 for five.
Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir (14) gave the hosts the perfect start with an opening stand of 50 off 46 balls before Harbhajan Singh had his compatriot chopping the ball onto the stumps in the eighth over.
Also last night, Wriddhiman Saha scored a blistering half-century as another commanding batting display by Kings XI Punjab saw them twice make IPL history with a spectacular six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Wicketkeeper Saha hit 54 from 26 balls, while Glenn Maxwell (43 off 22) and Manan Vohra (47 off 20) also made important contributions as the visitors to the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad chased down the mammoth 206-victory target with eight balls to spare. They also recorded the quickest ever IPL team centuries and 150 as they surged to the top of the table.
That after the hosts had amassed 205 for five thanks to a fine display of power hitting from Naman Ojha, who plundered 79 off just 36 deliveries, proved to be the foundation for his side after they lost the toss and were asked to bat first.