[Scorecard: DD Vs KKR]
After posting 162/4 in 20 overs at the Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium, KKR bowlers restricted the Delhi batting line-up to 144/8 in 20 overs.
Offspinner Sunil Narine was yet again weaved his magic in his four-over spell. The West Indian slow bowler was entrusted with the job of defending 25 runs in the final six balls of the match and he accomplished it, giving just seven.
Narine took two wickets in the final over and finished with figures of 2/24. Jacques Kallis also had two wickets for same number of runs in four overs. Laxmipathy Balaji, Iqbal Abdulla, Shakib Al Hasan and Rajat Bhatia also had one scalp each.
Much was expected from Delhi openers Virender Sehwag and David Warner, but they fell off successive balls early in the chase. Warner was unlucky to have been adjudged caught by umpire Billy Doctrove. Warner hit his boot with the bat and umpire thought ball taken the edge of the bat.
Later, Mahela Jayawardene (40) and Naman Ojha (29) steadied the innings but they were always behind the asking rate. Once they were dismissed the late order, including Ross Taylor could not do much. Taylor was held back and arrived at seven but by that time the game had slipped out of Delhi's grasp.
Kolkata Knight Riders Innings Report
Kolkata Knight Riders produced a late assault to post 162/4 in 20 overs.
Laxmi Ratan Shukla and Yusuf Pathan's attack in the final four overs was the key to KKR crossing the 150-mark. Shukla and Pathan, both were excellent with bat. Shukla-Pathan unfinished association produced 56 runs off just four overs. The final over bowled by Varun Aaron was plundered for 21 runs.
Shukla, who came into this match for Manoj Tiwary, justified his place with a fine cameo of 24 not out off 11 balls with three fours and one six. Pathan, who did not have big scores so far, to back his top price-tag, came out firing on the big day. The right-hander smashed an unbeaten 40 from 21 balls with three boundaries and two hits over the ropes.
Earlier, Delhi broke a brisk opening stand with a run out of Gautam Gambhir. It was an excellent work by Venugopal Rao at mid-off. His direct hit found Gambhir just short.
Gambhir was looking in great touch but his innings was cut short by the run out. His 32 off 16 balls had three fours and two sixes.
When Gambhir departed the score was 48/1 in 5.5 overs. The KKR captain"s wicket allowed Delhi to come back into the game and then put the brakes on the scoring rate.
Brendon McCullum struggled to a 36-ball 31 and Jacques Kallis made 30 off 33 deliveries. When these two were at the crease, Delhi bowlers gave fewer runs. McCullum was dismissed by left-arm spinner Pawan Negi.
Shakib Al Hasan failed as Irfan Pathan sent the Bangladesh left-hander for just one run. Kallis followed soon to the pavilion.
Negi was the most economical bowler with figures of 1/18 off four while Irfan had 1/20 in four. However, Irfan injured his right hand and was taken to hospital for treatment after completing his quota of overs. Aaron was destroyed for a wicketless four-over spell with 48 runs. Morne Morkel and Umesh Yadav too were not spared, conceding 37 runs apiece. Yadav had one wicket to show.
There is some turn in the pitch which was seen during Negi's bowling. KKR have three spinners in their line-up and could play a big role in the second half of this game.
Kolkata Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir won the toss and elected to bat first against Delhi Daredevils.
KKR have gone in with one change, Laxmi Ratan Shukla for Manoj Tiwary. Delhi have two changes, captain Virender Sehwag and Ross Taylor take Andre Russell and Unmukt Chand's places.
The winner of today will go straight to the final on May 27 in Chennai. The loser, however, will get another chance to make the title clash as they will meet the winner of Eliminator tomorrow which is between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings in Bangalore on Wednesday night.
These two teams have been the best in the league. When they met earlier, the head-to-head record stood 1-1. On April 5, Delhi won by eight wickets at Kolkata'a home, Eden Gardens. When Kolkata visited Delhi, they returned the favour on May 7, winning by six wickets.
Delhi Daredevils: Virender Sehwag (captain), Mahela Jayawardene, Irfan Pathan, Ross Taylor, Umesh Yadav, Naman Ojha (wicketkeeper), Venugopal Rao, Pawan Negi, Morne Morkel, Varun Aaron, David Warner.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir (captain), Brendon McCullum (wicketkeeper), Jacques Kallis, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Yusuf Pathan, Debabrata Das, Rajat Bhatia, Sunil Narine, Iqbal Abdulla, Shakib Al Hasan, Laxmipathy Balaji.
Umpires: Simon Taufel (Australia) and Billy Doctrove (West Indies)
Third Umpire: Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka)
Match Referee: Andy Pycroft (Zimbabwe)