Durban:Royal Challengers Bangalore overcame some anxious moments before snatching a thrilling five-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders in an Indian Premier League match on Wednesday.
After restricting the Kolkata side to a modest 139 for six which largely revolved around Chris Gayle's knock of 40 and MN van Wyk's unbeaten 44, the RCB overhauled the target with just one ball to spare to record their second win in the tournament.
In the battle of the laggards, the RCB have the last laugh and the narrow victory has given them a hope of riving their fortunes in the high profile event.
The Bangalore openers Shreevats Goswami and South African all-rounder Jaques Kallis laid a strong foundation with a 69-run partnership off 67 balls.
Goswami was in a punishing mode as the left-hander sent Ajit Agarkar out of the ground on two successive occasions in fourth over before hitting two boundaries off left-arm spinner Murali Karthik in the next over.
Goswami, who adorned his 46-ball 43 with six boundaries, found good support from Kallis (23) as the duo showed a consummate ease in rotating strikes to the frustration of Kolkata skipper Brendon McCullum.
Hodge tasted the first success for the Knight Riders as he broke the opening partnership by sending back Goswami in 12th over as his turning delivery kissed the willow before going to wicketkeeper MN van Wyk's custody.
The proceedings took an interesting turn when Bangalore received three jolts within 38 runs with Hodge striking twice.
Kallis fell prey to paceman Ishant Sharma, followed by two cheap dismissals of skipper Kevin Pietersen (13) and Virat Kohli (19).
With 10 runs required from the last over off Chris Gayle, experienced Mark Boucher held his nerve to hit a boundary and then rotate strike with Manish Pandey (2 not out) before wrapping up the affair by sending the ball to the fence.
Earlier, Bangalore skipper Pietersen decided to share the new ball with spinner RE van der Merwe and his vagary paid dividend as the Kolkata team suffered a huge blow when skipper Brandon McCullum departed with a golden duck in the very first delivery of the match.
McCullum tried to start on an attacking note but his ambitious cut off Pietersen found Virat Kohli in backward point as the latter pouched a well-judged catch.
Brad Hodge then joined opener Chris Gayle out on the middle before Anil Kumble struck in the sixth over, just when the duo were struggling to repair the innings.
Kumble sent Hodge packing (17 off 15) as the batsman failed to make out a drifting delivery off the former India skipper that found the Australian's leg in front of the sticks.
Ganguly (1) disappointed when his team was expecting a timely knock from the left-hander who went after Praveen Kumar before his lofted shot landed in safe hand of South African Jaques Kallis.
However, South African Wyk and Wridhiman Saha stitched up a crucial 40-run partnership when the Kolkata side was struggling at 70 for 4 following the departure of Gayle.
The West Indian put up some delectable strokeplays and smote the ball into fence on six occasions before, Goswami ran behind to pouch a spectacular catch near the fence in the 12th over off KP Appanna.
An experienced Kumble broke the partnership when he dismissed Saha on 21, which he made off 14 balls and with the help of one sixer, as Pietersen took an easy catch in the 17th over.
It was a good show from Bangalore's bowling department as dismissals in regular intervals stopped the Kolkata team from posting a fighting target.
For Bangalore team, Kumble managed two wickets for just 16 runs while Pietersen and Merwe managed one each. Praveen Kumar and KP Appanna also bagged one wicket each.