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IPL Match 30: All round Russell steers Kolkata to win against Chennai

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The defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders gave their hopes of retaining their title a massive boost by rising to no.3 in the IPL standings after beating the table topping Chennai Super Kings by 7 wickets at the Eden Gardens tonight.

The Knight Riders won an important toss in Kolkata and continued with their penchant of preferring to chase down targets.

To follow up the toss, KKR made a brilliant start with young Aussie seamer Pat Cummins knocking over Dwayne Smith for a first ball duck. Chennai though responded in typical fashion with Kiwi sensation Brendon McCullum smashing 32 from 12 balls with the help of 3 fours and as many sixes.

KKR though stormed back into the contest by knocking over the Chennai middle order in quick succession. Suresh Raina went for 8 while skipper MS Dhoni contributed just the 1 run to his team's cause. In between, Chennai also lost McCullum, while Faf du Plessis made a cameo 20 from 11 balls.

At 72-5 from not even 7 overs, the game had really flown at a rapid rate, and some common sense finally took over with Dwayne Bravo making a patient 30 from 32 balls to ensure his team batted through the 20 overs. Ravindra Jadeja chipped in with 24, while Pawan Negi made a dramatic 27 from 13 balls to push Chennai to a competitive score of 165-9.

Veteran Aussie Brad Hogg was once again the pick of the bowlers for KKR, taking 4-29, while Andre Russell too was good with the ball, taking 2-20 from his 4 overs.

KKR's response got off to a decent response with skipper Gautam Gambhir making 19  from 16 balls before falling to Mohit Sharma. Manish Pandey (3) and Surya Kumar Yadav (2) both failed to fire, but an unbroken partnership worth 112 between Robin Uthappa (80 from 58 balls) and Andre Russell (59 from 32 balls) to Kolkata to victory with a ball to spare.

Mini Scorecard:

Chennai Super Kings 165/9 (20 overs, 8.25rpo)

B McCullum 32 (12) B Hogg 4-29 (4)

D Bravo 30 (32) A Russell 2-20 (4)

Kolkata Knight Riders 169/3 (19.5 overs, 8.52rpo)

R Uthappa 80* (58) M Sharma 1-22 (4)

A Russell 59* (32) R More 1-35 (3.5)

Kolkata Knight Riders win by 7 wickets