Skipper Suresh Raina conjured up a tenacious rearguard action to lead Gujarat Lions to a four-wicket win against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier League at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Friday.
Raina (84; 46b; 9x4, 4x6) brought up his second fifty of the season's IPL, also eclipsing Virat Kohli as the highest run-getter in the cash-rich T20 league. This was the former Chennai Super Kings batsman's 30th half century.
The dashing left-hander, who was dropped on 1 by wicketkeeper Robin Uthappa, smashed Chris Woakes and Nathan Coulter-Nile for 18 and 16 runs, respectively, but fell to Kuldeep Yadav. Ravindra Jadeja, who was unbeaten on 19 with James Faulker for company at 4, scored the winning runs with a boundary.
At the beginning, Aaron Finch (31;15b 4x4 2x6) lost his wicket just when he was looking good. Coulter-Nile undid the world's second-best T20 batsman with a fast bouncer that the Aussie tried to pull, holing out to Manish Pandey at deep square leg.
Play was stopped for half an hour after a light drizzle, helping KKR stem the flow of runs just when Brendon McCullum was looking dangerous on 27 off 13 balls and his team on 62/1. Gujarat were ahead by 21 runs by Duckworth-Lewis method.
The big-hitting Kiwi fell to Woakes with Pandey snaffling it at sweeper cover.
Dinesh Karthik (3), Ishan Kishan (4) and Dwayne Smith (5) followed suit soon after, Coulter-Nile, Kuldeep Yadav and Umesh Yadav removing the trio.
Earlier, a brilliant half century by Uthappa (72; 48b 8x4 2x6) and a quickfire 17-ball 42 (9x4, 1x6) by makeshift opener Sunil Narine helped KKR post 187/5.
(With inputs from IANS)