It was on this day, seven years ago, when Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) won their second title in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2014. It is a secret to none that Gautam Gambhir was one of the finest and charismatic leaders to have ever captained the Knight Riders. Under Gambhir, KKR achieved unprecedented success as they won the IPL two times, in 2012 and 2014 respectively.
Playing at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru, Kolkata Knight Riders were up against Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings). Punjab were the favorites to win the cup in 2014 as they were on a roll having finished the league stage at the top of the table with 11 victories from 14 games.
However, the sheer brilliance and the dedication by KKR resulted in them defying all the odds and winning the final by three wickets. The summit clash kick-started with Kings XI Punjab batting first and posting a massive total of 199 runs on the scoreboard. The wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha played one of the finest knocks of his IPL career. Saha smashed 115 runs in just 55 deliveries with the help of ten boundaries and eight maximums.
Saha was aptly supported by Manan Vohra who added 67 runs to the scoreboard. Chasing 200, KKR didn’t experience an ideal start as Robin Uthappa lost his wicket at 5 while Gautam Gambhir also marched back to the pavilion after scoring 23 runs. However, Saha’s efforts were outplayed by Manish Pandey who played a match-winning knock to take KKR home.
Pandey scored a scintillating 94 runs in just 50 deliveries. His knock included seven boundaries and six maximums at a strike rate of 188. Apart from Pandey, Yusuf Pathan was also decent with the willow as he added 36 runs. The efforts by KKR batters finally paid off as they won the final by three wickets to lift their second IPL trophy.