The league phase of the IPL has started in Abu Dhabi with the opening match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians on Wednesday.
KKR won the toss and batted first scoring 163 runs losing five wickets. Captain Gautam Gambhir scored a duck out after facing 8 balls. However Jacqes Kallis (scored 72) and Manish Pandey (scored 64) helped KKR set a big target. Chasing the target of 164, Mumbai Indians suffered early blows, losing Michael Hussey for a mere 3 runs. KKR won the match by 41 runs as MI scored only 122/7 in 20 overs. Sunil Narine took 4 wickets for 20 runs and helped restrict Mumbai Indians.
England cricketer Kevin Pietersen, who was bought by Delhi Daredevils for USD 1.5 million (Rs 9 crore), has been ruled out of the opening match.
The match which is against Bangalore’s Royal Challengers is due on Thursday at Sharjah. Kevin suffered an injury on his right hand little finger in March at The Oval. Daredevils assistant coach Eric Simons said that Pietersen did not play in the practice match and vice-captain Dinesh Karthik will now lead the team.
Simons said that Pietersen himself has been disappointed on missing out as he has been looking forward to playing for a long time. He was enthusiastic about his new role of captain for Daredevils this year and is disappointed as much as the team.