A Virat Kohli century proved in vain as Gujarat Lions returned to winning ways with a six-wicket victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore.
But the Lions paced their response well, Dwayne Smith (32) and Brendon McCullum (42) laying the foundations with some confident strokeplay. In the five IPL matches he has played so far, Kohli has scored four fifty-plus scores. But his opening partner Kohli and de Villiers kept the scoreboard ticking, sneaking in with ones, twos to take the score to 48/1 after completion of the powerplay. He hit 11 fours.
However, after a stand of 56, Smith – who was looking unsafe – was run-out with Rajagopal Satish taking the bails off at the non-striker’s end in the 13th over. And in the ninth over, McCullum hit Shamsi for a four through mid-wicket but gave away a simple caught and bowled chance to the bowler in the next ball. With 45 required from 30 and Lions only two wickets down, Kohli brought on Chahal one more time into the attack and the leggie delivered with Raina’s wicket to put the pressure back on the chasing side. Richardson dropped Karthik off his own bowling in the next over, which costs RCB dear in the end.
And Kohli took centre stage in the final over as well, hammering a six over midwicket to take him to 92 with two balls remaining and he proceeded to hit consecutive boundaries to bring up his first T20 century from the last ball as RCB finished on 180-2.
Virat Kohli celebrates his maiden T20 century. KL Rahul also scored 51 runs of 35 balls.
However, after the toss, it emerged that Mandeep Singh had injured himself during practice and Rahul took his place. The other opener Shane Watson contributed six while A B de Villiers made 20 from 16 balls. He later said at the innings break that he had a minor sprain in his ankle but did not trouble much during his unbeaten innings.
For Kolkata, Sunil Narine (1/32), Shakib Al Hasan (1/14), R Sathish (1/20) and Umesh Yadav (1/16) picked up one wicket each after skipper Gautam Gambhir won the toss and elected to field here.
Gujarat Lions captain Suresh Raina praised his batsmen for the win.