Kolkata, April 8: Former champion Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) kicked off their run in Indian Premier League 2018 with a 4 wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) here on Sunday night.
Needing 177 to win the hosts reached the tough target in 18.5 overs losing 6 wickets. Sunil rine gave them a rapid start in the power play. The West Indian spinner struck 50 off just 19 balls with 4 fours and 5 sixes to build the innings. Nitish Ra added vital 34 in middle overs before skipper Dinesh Karthick finished the game in style who remained unbeaten at 35 off 29.
Earlier, De Villiers and Brendon McCullum scored 43 and 44 respectively while Mandeep Singh smashed a 18-ball 37 to help Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) post 176/7 in 20 overs.
De Villiers was at his imperious best, his 23-ball 44 laced with five sixes and one four. McCullum too looked good for his 27-ball 43 at the start. De Villiers and Virat Kohli (31) stitched together a third wicket stand of 64 runs off just 36 balls. KKR maged to get some relief with part-time off-spinner Nitish Ra removing De Villiers and Kohli (31) looking set at the other end.
KKR's newly-appointed captain Dinesh Karthik elected to field and his side got off to a bad start as Viy Kumar (2/30) leaked 14 runs in the first over, McCullum flicking him down the leg side for a four in the very first ball.
The visitors lost Quinton De Kock (4) early, the South African wicketkeeper-batsman trying to reverse sweep Piyush Chawla (1/31) and picking out Viy Kumar at short third man.
McCullum and Kohli then joined hands for a 45-run stand for the second wicket. But just when the visitors were looking steady with McCullum looking in fine touch and Kohli at ease playing second fiddle, Sunil rine (1/30) got rid of the dangerous Kiwi with a shortish offbreak that dislodged the stumps.
Brief scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore: 176/7 (Brendon McCullum 43, AB De Villiers 44, Mandeep Singh 37; R. Viy Kumar 2/30, Nitish Ra 2/11) lost to Kolkata Knight Riders 177/6 in 18.5 overs (rine 50, Karthik 35no, Russel 15, Ra 34, Woekes 3/36, Umesh Yadav 2/27). Agencies