New Delhi: For a team which has failed to deliver inspite of having star names at their disposal, the Kolkata Knight Riders seem to have finally got their act together in the Indian Premier League (IPL) after three years of heartbreak and heartburn.
Placed second in the points table ahead of the mighty Chennai Super Kings is something that the Knight Riders may well relish, but it by no means gives an indication as to how their fortunes are going to unfurl for the remainder of the competition.
Four victories and three defeats portrays a fairly inconsistent time for the side which boasts of having the costliest players on its rolls.
However, the individual performance by some of their players has been exemplary which instills loads of confidence in a unit that seems to be gelling magnificently well.
Captain Gautam Gambhir has been leading by example with notable contributions at the crucial number three position while Jacques Kallis has been in sublime touch with a couple of impressive half centuries to his name.
Middle order batman Manoj Tiwary finally came of age for Kolkata with his innings of 61 not out against the Delhi Daredevils on Thursday which eventually turned out to be the difference between the two sides at the Kotla.
Kolkata's spin bowling department has been well served in the competition by the likes of Shakib Al Hasan, Iqbal Abdullah and Yusuf Pathan.
Coming to the problem areas for the Knight Riders, their pace attack led by Brett Lee has not really fired but then they have not really been tested either.
Apart from their loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore where the Knight Riders were blown away by Chris Gayle's whirlwind century, it has been their batting which has been a letdown at critical junctures.
Against the Chennai Super Kings in the inaugural match of the tournament, the winning target of 154 was well within sight and it was just poor finishing which led to their 2 run loss.
The clash against newcomers Kochi Tuskers Kerala at home turned out to a disaster for the Knight Riders who failed to chase down a measly target of 133.
Defending a modest total of 148 against the Delhi Daredevils has however set the balance right for Kolkata who might have turned the corner with a much needed win.
The Kolkata Knight Riders should now be considered as one of the favourites to go all the way even though IPL-4 is being considered by many as the most open one since its inaugural 2008 edition.