Kolkata buckle under Lucknow force
Fast bowlers Avesh Khan and Jason Holder took three wickets each to propel Lucknow Super Giants to the IPL summit with a thumping 75-run win over Kolkata Knight Riders on Saturday.
Quinton de Kock, who made a 29-ball 50, and Deepak Hooda, who hit 41 off 27 deliveries, put on 71 runs to the lay the foundation of Lucknow's 176 for seven after being put in to bat first in Pune.
Bowlers then combined to help Lucknow, who replace fellow newcomers Gujarat Titans at the top of the 10-team table, bundle out Kolkata for 101 in 14.3 overs.
Kolkata were never in the chase after they lost their top four including skipper Shreyas Iyer, for six, and Aaron Finch, for 14, early. They fell to 25-4.
West Indies big-hitter Andre Russell gave them some hope during his 19-ball 45 but the innings fell apart after his departure.
Russell attempted to turn the tide with three fours and five sixes but was caught at third-man off Avesh who finished with figures of 3-19.
Holder wrapped up the Kolkata innings with two successive wickets and a run out.
The left-right batting pair of De Kock and Hooda set up victory after they took the attack to the opposition bowlers following skipper KL Rahul's run out for nought in the first over.
Marcus Stoinis, who hammered 28 off 14, and Jason Holder, who made a four-ball 13, also added to the total with their breezy cameos and hit five sixes between them in a 30-run over from Shivam Mavi.