Narine spins a web as Delhi finish at 128

Kolkata, April 3 (IANS) Kolkata Knight Riders spinner Sunil Narine finished with a four wicket haul as Delhi Daredevils were skittled out for 128 in the opening game of the sixth edition of the Indian Premier League at the Eden Gardens here Wednesday.

Sent in to bat on a sluggish wicket, the Delhi franchise found strokemaking difficult and most of its batsmen threw their wickets cheaply in their bid to force the pace. The sole exception was skipper Mahela Jayawardene (66, 52b, 8×4, 1×6), who played a smooth knock and got out only in the penultimate over as he went for an uppish shot off Brett Lee and was taken by Narine in the covers. Jayawardene, who has completed 1,500 runs in the IPL, reached his half-century off 46 balls.

Except Jayawardene and Warner (21), none of the Delhi willowers could reach double figures.

The match had a sensational start, with Australian pacer Brett Lee straightaway dislodging the young Unmukt Chand’s off stump with a sharp away-cutter, much to joy of the packed crowd.

Jayawardene and David Warner, however, repaired the early damage by scoring at a brisk pace as the Daredevils scampered to 41/1 after five overs.

Warner looked in fine touch, picking up boundaries mainly on the leg side, with Jacques Kallis getting most of the stick.

However, Caribbean offie Sunil Narine, who shone with 24 wickets in the previous edition of the tourney, saw the back of Warner (21; 19b, 4×4) by inducing an edge that finished at first slip, as the visitors stood at 44/2 in the sixth over.

Wickets continued to tumble at regular intervals, as Manprit Juneja, Naman Ojha, Johan Botha and Irfan Pathan fell cheaply, even though Jayawardene anchored the innings at one end.

For the Knights, striving to defend their title, Narine (4-13), Bhatia (2-23) and Lee (2-40) were the main wicket takers.

–indo-asian News Service

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