KKR destroy Daredevils to further prove title credentials
Kolkata Knight Riders strengthened their position at the IPL's summit as Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa continued their excellent form in a seven-wicket thrashing of Delhi Daredevils.
The pair - the leading two run-scorers in this year's competition - enjoyed a second-wicket stand of 108 as KKR made light work of chasing down 161 for victory at Eden Gardens on Friday.
Captain Gambhir made his fourth half-century of 2017 with an unbeaten 71 from 52 balls, while Uthappa has also passed fifty on four occasions thanks to his 59 off 33.
It looked as though the hosts would be chasing a much larger total as bottom side Delhi reached 123-1 inside 14 overs thanks to 60 from opener Sanju Samson and Shreyas Iyer's 47.
But Nathan Coulter-Nile (3-34), Sunil Narine (1-25) and Kuldeep Yadav (0-27) restricted them to 160-6, a total that was swiftly put into perspective by Gambhir and Uthappa as KKR cruised home with 3.4 overs to spare.
The leaders ought to have been chasing more after Samson and Iyer put on 75 for the second wicket, but once the former departed after striking four fours and three sixes in his 38-ball stay, momentum seeped out of the innings, with only one boundary coming in the last four overs.
Narine's pinch-hitting did not come off for KKR on this occasion, the West Indian cleaned up by Kagiso Rabada in the second over, before Gambhir and Uthappa took centre stage.
Uthappa escaped on nine when Samson and Amit Mishra left a high ball to each other and he made the most of that reprieve, clubbing Chris Morris for 16 runs from the first three deliveries of the eighth over.
He was eventually run out by Karun Nair's direct hit from backward point, but the game had long drifted away from Delhi by that stage, Gambhir able to lead his side to their seventh victory from nine this season.