Ahmedabad: Chasing 169 runs target, Kolkata didn’t help their cause by a poor batting effort in the chase. Keeping wickets in hand is a sound ploy of course but they forgot to score runs and allowed the pressure to build up. Hodge’s approach was even stranger, considering Angelo Mathews and Owais Shah were cooling their heels in the dressing room. Even when he was well-settled, he waited for the new batsmen to attack, which was always going to be difficult on this slow track which aided the spinners. And Sourav Ganguly, too, struggled today though unlike Hodge, he tried to go for the big shots but could rarely find his timing.
Earlier Australian Adam Voges provided some late sparks to lift Rajasthan Royals to 168-7 against Kolkata Knight Riders at Motera on Saturday.
Voges was not out on 37 that included two sixes off the final over, bowled by Ishant Sharma to boost the total after the Royals lost too many wickets in the later stages of their innings. Abhishek Jhunjhunwala was the top-scorer with a fine 45.
Rajasthan were off to a woeful start when opener Michael Lumb was trapped in front of the stumps off the first ball of their innings from Ashok Dinda after Royals captain Shane Warne won the toss and elected to bat.
Faiz Fazal, however, revived the Royals with elegant strokeplay, with the left-hander playing an attractive hand of 31 that included six boundaries. Naman Ojha gave him good company, but the duo failed to carry on, handing the Kolkata bowlers the advantage.
Jhunjhunwala, however, played a solid knock but star batsman Yusuf Pathan’s third successive failure after his century in the first game pulled them back. Rajasthan failed to put the ball away to the boundary often enough before Voges’ late surge saw them up to a decent total.
Rajasthan have lost all their three matches so far in the tournament while Kolkata have won two and lost one, the last a defeat to Chennai Super Kings.
Chris Gayle had to wait for his first game for Kolkata as he was down with fever. They made two changes, bringing back Cheteshwar Pujara and including Ashok Dinda in place of Rohan Gavaskar and Laxmi Ratan Shukla.
Rajasthan included left-hand batsman Faiz Fazal, while Shaun Tait and Adam Voges replaced Morne Morkel and Damien Martyn.