In the second game of the blockbuster Sunday, the Dinesh Karthik-led Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) registered a resounding 8-wicket victory over the Rajasthan Royals (RR) at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. The KKR bowlers delivered a phenomenal combined effort to restrict the opposition under a below-par first innings total. Steven Smith did play a fine unbeaten half-century knock, but he failed to power his team towards a fighting total.
However, in the second innings, it was the Chris Lynn-Sunil Narine show which absolutely stole the show. The KKR opening pair decimated the RR bowlers to the core, composing a belligerent partnership for the first wicket which in turn brought the result towards a mere formality. Robin Uthappa finished off the proceedings with an entertaining cameo to help KKR pick up its fourth win of the tournament.
Karthik’s tactical captaincy and bowlers combined effort leaves RR wanting
KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik won the toss and opted to field first because he reckoned that the wicket will hold well throughout the 40 overs. KKR new ball bowler Prasidh Krishna started off the proceedings with a beautiful delivery to send back RR skipper Ajinkya Rahane back in the hut in just the second over of the innings. After the skipper’s dismissal, the duo of Jos Buttler and Steven Smith combined together to resurrect the RR innings. The pair did stitch a fine partnership of 72 runs, but the runs were coming at a very slow rate and as a result, RR’s innings seemed to be going nowhere.
KKR’s latest recruit Harry Gurney bowled a fantastic spell on debut during the middle-overs stage to keep the hosts under the radar. However, Smith who initially struggled to rotate the strike then came back strongly to register his first fifty of the season. He compiled an excellent unbeaten knock of 73 runs off 59 balls which consisted of 7 fours and 1 six. But even with Smith’s half-century innings, RR managed to post a total of only 139 runs which surely looked below-par on that Jaipur wicket. For KKR, Gurney bowled really well to pick up two crucial wickets at an impressive economy.
Narine and Lynn’s staggering opening brilliance lead KKR in the chase
In the second innings, KKR opener Sunil Narine got his team off to a flying start, smashing Krishnappa Gowtham for a blazing total of 22 runs in his opening over. Chris Lynn also didn’t hesitated and joined his partner in crime to launch a combined onslaught. The KKR opening duo batted amazingly well to record the fastest team half-century in IPL 2019 off just 25 balls and also the second highest powerplay score of 65 runs. Narine smashed an oozing knock of 47 runs off just 25 balls which consisted of 6 fours and 3 sixes, before being trapped by Shreyas Gopal.
Nonetheless, Narine had already done the job, compiling a brilliant opening partnership of 91 runs along with Chris Lynn and in turn brought down the required run-rate to a mere formality. Lynn blasted a terrific half-century off just 31 balls. Robin Uthappa too joined the party, contributing with a significant cameo knock of 26 runs off 16 balls and in turn powered his team towards a scintillating victory that too in just 13.5 overs.
RR: 139/3 in 20 overs (Steven Smith-73*, Jos Buttler-37; Harry Gurney 2/25)
KKR: 140/2 in 13.5 overs (Chris Lynn-50, Sunil Narine-47; Shreyas Gopal 2/35)
Result: Kolkata Knight Riders won the match by 8 wickets
After, 2?1?st match— CricPlex???? ? (@CricPlex) April 7, 2019
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