HYDERABAD - Kolkata Knight Riders were not made to too sweat much as they brushed aside an uninspired Hobart Hurricanes to reach their first Champions League Twenty20 final. After the Hurricanes' batsmen, barring the sprightly Shoaib Malik in front of his adopted home fans of Hyderabad, showed a lack of application against KKR's spin attack, Jacques Kallis and Manish Pandey stood up to their bowlers to pilot the IPL champions to victory with five balls to spare.

The Big Bash runners-up never looked like really testing KKR after they set them 141, and their chances of reaching Saturday's final further slipped away as Kallis and Pandey forged a match-winning stand of 63. Pandey fell for a sprightly 40 to leave KKR needing 34 in 28 balls, but Kallis finished the job with an unbeaten 54, hitting the winning runs with a swivelled six.

KKR's chase began brightly with Robin Uthappa hitting consecutive boundaries off Ben Hilfenhaus, but the wicket of Gautam Gambhir - clipping Doug Bollinger to midwicket - and Robin Uthappa - bowled when charging Xavier Doherty - lifted Hurricanes' mood. Pandey sparked the innings back to life following Uthappa's exit for 17 off 21 by walking down the track and helped by some gift-wrapped full tosses and half-vollies, overtook Kallis with a series of whips and carves. He swatted consecutive fours off Ben Laughlin and then, getting a life on 22 when Ben Hilfenhaus overstepped, carted the same bowlers for two boundaries; next to suffer was Doug Bollinger, whom Pandey swung over deep square leg for six. Kallis was content to let Pandey take most of the strike, having eased KKR's early nerves with three fours in his first nine balls faced, and quietly moved along. Pandey fell for 40, but with the run rate in control KKR were never in danger, and Yusuf weighed in with 14. Kallis brought all his experience into play with an assured 54, his fifty coming up with a six that burst through Hilfenhaus' hands at deep backward square leg.

KKR's win was fashioned in the field, when after stand-in captain Doherty chose to field on what appeared a rock-hard surface. Dominic Michael, playing just his second T20, popped a return which Andre Russell took diving to his right, to score 0, and within moments, Yusuf won an lbw shout against Aiden Blizzard, out for a golden duck. Blizzard got a bad call, however, as replays showed a thick inside edge.

This left Ben Dunk and Malik to contend with Sunil Narine with the score 13 for 2; an unenviable task no matter who you are. Dunk collected three fours off the fifth over from Russell and looked very strong on the cut and clip off the pads, but Malik clearly was at ease against KKR's three-pronged spin attack on a slow surface. When Dunk fell for 39, cutting Kuldeep Yadav straight to point, Hurricanes were 46 for 3.

It wasn't until the 13th over that Malik got some tempo, lofting Yadav down the ground for six and then tapping Narine backward of point for four in the 14th. Looking to himself get off the blocks after a slow start, Travis Birt charged at Narine and found long-on for 13 off 23 balls. An edgy Jonathan Wells didn't last long, bowled by a Piyush Chawla googly when making room to cut, and the late assault Hurricanes desperately needed never appeared despite Malik's assault on young Yadav.

The Pakistan allrounder clouted two sixes and two fours off the young Chinaman bowler, getting to his fifty in 41 balls, but an eight-run last over from Russell left Hurricanes well short of the 150-mark.



B Dunk c Gambhir b Kuldeep    39

D Michael c & b Russell    0

A Blizzard lbw b Pathan    0

Shoaib Malik not out    66

T Birt c ten Doeschate b Narine    13

J Wells b Chawla    3

E Gulbis run out    15

B Hilfenhaus not out    0

EXTRAS: (b1, lb1, w2)    4

TOTAL: (6 wickets; 20 overs)    140

FOW: 1-4, 2-13, 3-46, 4-77, 5-91, 6-135

BOWLING: Y Pathan 4-0-24-1, A Russell 4-0-24-1, S Narine 4-0-24-1, Kuldeep Yadav 4-0-31-1, P Chawla-4-0-35-1


R Uthappa b Doherty    17

G Gambhir c Wells b Bollinger    4

J Kallis not out    54

M Pandey c Shoaib b Laughlin    40

Y Pathan not out    14

EXTRAS: (w10, nb2)    12

TOTAL: (3 wkts; 19.1 overs)    141

FOW: 1-20, 2-44, 3-107

BOWLING: B Hilfenhaus 4-0-28-0, D Bollinger 3.1-0-26-1, X Doherty 4-0-28-1, E Gulbis 4-0-23-0, B Laughlin 4-0-36-1

TOSS: Hobart Hurricanes

UMPIRES: S Ravi, R Tucker

TV UMPIRE: VA Kulkarni