KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS SWEPT SUNRISERS HYDERABAD ASIDE EASILY, TO REGISTER THEIR 100TH IPL WIN:
IPL 2021, 3RD MATCH:
Sunrisers hyderabad met Kolkata Knight riders in the 3rd match of this IPL season yesterday at M.A.Chidambaram stadium, Chepauk, Chennai. Kolkata registered their 100th IPL win by comfortably beating Sunrisers Hyderabad with a margin of 10 runs. The partnership between KKR batsmen Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi provided the vital quick runs which helped KKR post 187/6 at the end of 20 Overs. Hyderabad who looked out of sorts from the beginning itself were unable to chase it down despite fighting knocks from Manish Pandey, Jhonny Bairstow and last minute heroics of Abdul Samad.
Kolkata Knight Riders: 187/6, 20 Overs,
Nitish Rana – 80 (56), Rahul Tripathi – 53 (29),
Rashid Khan – 4.0/24/2, Mohammed Nabi – 4.0/32/2
Sunrisers Hyderabad: 177/5, 20 Overs,
Manish Pandey – 61 (44), Jonny Bairstow – 55 (40),
Prasidh Krishna – 4.0/35/2
Player of the Match: Nitish Rana
TOSS & TEAM SELECTION:
Sunrisers won the toss and chose to bowl first. It is been understood Kane Williamson was not fit enough to be picked. Hence Sunrisers formed their playing X1 with 4 foreign players in the form of Jonny Bairstow, Mohammed Nabi, Rashid Khan and David Warner along with 7 Indian Players in the form of Wriddhiman Saha, Manish Pandey, Abdul Samad, Vijay Shankar, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, T Natarajan and Sandeep Sharma. Though this team looked like they can bat deep, it also seemed weak without specialist batters after 4th Position.
Kolkata on other hand picked Eoin Morgan, Shakib Al Hasan, Andre Russel and Pat Cummins as their away-players and picked Dinesh Karthick, Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Varun Chakravarthy, Prasidh Krishna and veteran Harbhajan Singh as their Indian-players to form their playing X1. They looked pretty stronger and balanced than SRH on paper to start with.
First Innings – Rana-Tripathi’s attacking Partnership stood tall despite Afghan Spin duo’s economical spells:
KKR surprised everyone by sending Nitish Rana ahead of Rahul Tripathy. But at the end it was all worth. Nitish Rana started the attack at one end and Shubman Gill took the role of anchoring. Hyderabad’s premium swing bowlers Bhuvaneshwar Kumar and Sandeep Sharma opened the attack. Bhuvi started with two tight overs but Sandeep was attacked from his first over itself including a hattrick of fours in his second over by Nitish Rana. Natarajan who came as the first change was welcomed with a six by Shubhman Gill who was only rotating strike until then. Seeing his pace bowlers getting attacked, Warner immediately brought Nabi for the 6th over within powerplay. Rana scored a boundary off Nabi and rotated strike to Gill. Gill was struggling to score freely against Nabi. But at the other end Nitish Rana looked very comfortable against all bowlers and was at 36 off 25 balls which also brought 50-run partnership between the opening duo by the end of first powerplay. Warner went to his premium wicket-taking option Rashid immediately after the powerplay.
Rashid provided the first breakthrough as expected getting rid of Gill for 15 runs which invited Rahul Tripathi to the party. Both Rana and Tripathi ensured they don’t loose wickets to the Afghan’s spin duo and handled their overs carefully. Even though they were kept majorly quiet by Rashid Khan, Tripathi squeezed 2 sixers and a boundary of otherwise very tight spell by Mohammed Nabi. But they also ensured the run-rate doesn’t fall down by attacking all other bowlers which includes Natarajan, Vijay Shankar, Bhuvaneshwar and Sandeep. At the end of 15 overs, KKR were at 145/1 well set for a 200+total.
But Rashid Khan and Nabi bowled beautifully in their 2nd spell. Rashid took the wicket of Tripathi, Nabi followed with the wicket of dangerously set Rana and KKR skipper Eoin Morgan back to back. They fell down from 145/1 in 15 overs to 167/5 in 18.5 overs. Only 22 runs scored off 23 balls with a fall of wickets. Dinesh Karthick death over hitting in which he scored 22 off 9 balls helped post KKR a total of 187/6 which proved vital at the end of the match.
SECOND INNINGS: BAIRSTOW-PANDEY’S CALCULATED HITTING, SAMAD’S LATE HEROICS NOT SUFFICIENT ENOUGH TO OVERPOWER KKR BOWLERS:
KKR bowlers started their bowling with a decent score to defend and they started with a mark. Young paceman Prasidh got rid off SRH skipper David Warner and soon after Shakib Al hasan picked the wicket of Saha sending back the openers with just 10 runs on the board. Jonny Bairstow joined with Manish Pandey and they started playing very sensibly. They were attacking the bad balls and rightly defending the good deliveries. They were also too cautious because they were the last specialist batters who had the track of playing long innings and scoring big. Even though Vijay, Samad, Nabi, Rashid all can bat they are yet to score big.
KKR bowlers sensed this opportunity and bowling at good lengths and more slower balls on this slow track which also holding a bit, to ensure the required run rate is always mounting for SRH. This increased the pressure on both the batsman. After scoring 55 of 39 balls, Bairstow lost his wicket caught at point in the bowling of Pat Cummins who set the trap well in that particular over to get rid off Bairstow. Vijay Shankar and Mohammed Nabi who came in after that were unable to provide the required firepower to reach the target but Pandey was fighting from another end. Williamson’s absence was hugely felt at those moments. Manish Pandey too was not able to score big at the end with some tight bowling from KKR bowlers who varied the pace well on the slow surface. Abdul Samad hit two sixers of world’s premium fast bowler Pat Cummins which showed his HITTING abilities. But his death over heroics were not sufficient enough to reach the target but ensured the margin of defeat was limited to 10 runs only.
POST MATCH TALKS:
Losing Captain David Warner admitted that he misread the pitch and never thought so many runs are available from this surface. He credited the opponents that they read the pitch much better and played accordingly which was the major reason for their defeat. He also promised that with so many games to go, SRH will bounce back strongly.
Winning skipper Eoin Morgan said that 10-day camp prior to this match was very helpful to adapting to the conditions. He was all praise for Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi whose partnership proved vital for the victory and credited that Bhaji’s experience too played key role for the bowlers to bowl in this conditions.
This victory also registered 100th WIN for KKR in IPLs.
Preview on TODAY’s MATCH:
KL Rahul led Punjab Kings X1 takes on Sanju Samson led Rajasthan Royals today at Mumbai’s Wankhade stadium. Though Punjab looks stronger and better team, RR is a kind of team who can bundle out any team on their day.
With Miller not available for selection, Rajasthan royals will have to get in with inexperienced middle order. They would be expecting more from Riyan Parag and Rahul Tewatia. Another problem they would be facing is non-availability of Jofra Archer. Andrew Tye and Chris Morris need to balance that pace attack.
On the otherhand, Punjab team seems to have no issues with selection as everyone is available.
Key batsman to look out for are KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Jos Butler, Chris Gayle, Ben Stokes and Sanju Samson.
Key Bowlers to look out for are Mohammed Shami, Chris Morris and Shreyas Gopal.