Kolkata Knight Riders [ Images ] thrashed Mumbai Indians [ Images ] by nine wickets in their Indian Premier League [ Images ] match at Eden Gardens on Monday to finish their campaign on a winning note.
Chasing a modest 134 for victory, the home side raced to 135 for 1 with 15 balls to spare.
Brendon McCullum [ Images ] ensured a smooth chase with a workmanlike run-a-ball 57 not out. The New Zealander's 56-ball knock was inclusive of eight hits to the fence -- quite a departure from his usual aggressive self -- and his third fifty of the tournament, his first this season.
It was the team from Kolkata's first ever win over Mumbai Indians in six matches in this competition - Mumbai having won all the five prior meetings, including the one at the Brabourne this season.
The win, their seventh in this campaign but only their third in the last six, helped them finish with 14 points from an equal number of matches.
The Shah Rukh [ Images ] Khan-owned franchise finished sixth in the table - ahead of Rajasthan Royals [ Images ] and Kings XI Punjab [ Images ] - gaining two places over their bottom-place finish last season but, nonetheless, after yet another disappointing show.
KKR, with some huge names in their repertoire, remain the only team never to qualify for the last four of the premier tournament.
As regards the team from Mumbai, it was just their fourth loss in 14 matches, but their third in the last six.
Having already qualified for the last four as the table toppers, Mumbai Indians, having made as many as six changes to their starting line-up, lost for only the fourth time (in 10 matches) when batting first in this edition.
They take on Royal Challengers [ Images ] Bangalore in the semi-finals on Wednesday.
With no pressure whatsoever, the Kolkata chase started in an emphatic manner.
Captain Sourav Ganguly [ Images ] (42) ensured KKR a fine start with a massive six over midwicket off Ali Murtaza's third ball.
Brendon McCullum joined the party with a boundary each off Dilhara Fernando and Ryan McLaren [ Images ].
Ganguly hit a boundary over extra cover in Fernando's second over and followed it up with a massive six over mid-off.
The captain had a reprieve when McLaren put him down at extra cover off Dwayne Bravo [ Images ].
McCullum hit a boundary each of McLaren and Stuart Binny to keep the scoring rate in control.
The duo combined well, putting on 97 runs the opening wicket - off just 83 balls - to not only lay the foundation of the Kolkata innings but also take them close to victory.
Mumbai Indians eventually got a breakthrough when Ganguly was caught by Bravo at extra cover off Sathish in the 14th over.
The left-hander's 36-ball knock was inclusive of four hits to the fence and two over it.
David Hussey [ Images ] was promoted up the order and he signaled his intention with a boundary off Murtaza and a maximum (over deep midwicket) off Ryan McClaren.
Meanwhile, McCullum completed a well-deserved half century with a single off McClaren.
When the second strategic timeout was taken - after the 16th over - the home side needed just 16 runs off their remaining four overs.
And it didn't take them long to reach their target, McCullum aptly finished the proceedings with a boundary over midwicket (off Duminy).
Earlier, Kolkata Knight Riders restricted Mumbai Indians to a modest total.
The visitors managed to score just 133 for eight in their stipulated 20 overs.
It was the table-toppers lowest total against the team from Kolkata.
The home team, already out of running for a semi-final berth, started on a strong note with two early wickets.
Bond struck with his fifth ball, having Aditya Tare (1) caught by Murali Kartik in front of square.
The New Zealander came back to take another wicket in his second over, inducing an edge of Shikar Dhawan's (10) blade and Wridhiman Saha made no mistakes behind the stumps.
Duminy (19) eased the pressure with a boundary each off Jaidev Undakat and Sourav Ganguly, and Saurabh Tiwary [ Images ] (46) joined the party with a massive six over deep midwicket off Ganguly.
As the field restrictions, Mumbai had made 42 for two and when the first strategic time out was taken (after nine overs) they had moved on to 66 for two.
Duminy and Tiwary put on 63 runs for the third wicket but it took them 10 overs to do it.
The Kolkata bowlers succeeded in keeping the scoring rate under check and the ensuing frustration resulted in reward for them.
Unadkat cleaned up Duminy with a quicker one in the 13th over.
And in the next over, Kartik had Tiwary caught by Brendon McCullum at short midwicket.
Tiwary's 37-ball knock comprised four hits to the fence and one over it.
The burden of captaincy proved a bit too much for Dwayne Bravo (5) and he lasted just nine balls before Kartik had him stumped.
And when R Sathish (11) hit Karthik for a boundary over extra cover in the final ball of the 16th over, it was the first boundary in 40 balls.
It didn't take long to hit the next though, Ambati Rayudu (27) helping himself to successive hits to the fence in the next over by Unadkat.
Sathish perished in the 18th over, hitting a Manoj Tiwary delivery straight to Kartik at long-on.
Rayudu hit a six over long-off in the final ball of the same over.
Stuart Binny (8) was caught by Ganguly at midwicket in Dinda's final over.
But Rayudu ensured his side's total had a semblance of respectability before being run out to the final ball.
Earlier, Mumbai Indians won the toss and elected to bat.
The table-toppers rested captain Sachin Tendulkar [ Images ] for the match, Dwayne Bravo leading the side instead.
MI had as many as six changes in the squad resting many key players in the process.
Mumbai Indians: Dwayne Bravo (captain), Ryan McLaren, Shikar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Saurabh Tiwary, JP Duminy [ Images ], R Sathish, Stuart Binny, Aditya Tare, Ali Murtaza, Dilhara Fernando.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Brendon McCullum, Manoj Tiwary, David Hussey, Angelo Mathews [ Images ], Cheteshwar Pujara [ Images ], Wridhiman Saha, Jaidev Unadkat, Murali Kartik, Ashoke Dinda, Shane Bond.