Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) were on well on the verge of chasing down the highest successful chase in the Indian Premier League (IPL) against Delhi Capitals (DC) Sharjah. Eoin Morgan and Rahul Tripathi were wrecker-in-chief for KKR, but Anrich Nortje’s brilliant penultimate over made sure DC defends 228 by 18 runs. However, it was the fiery knocks of Shreyas Iyer and Prithvi Shaw earlier with the bat which propelled Delhi Capitals (DC) against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to 228/4 in 20 overs.
DC approached the game with a ferocious attack, Prithvi Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan started smashing the ball from the word go, but their 56-run stand ended in the sixth over. Iyer came to bat at three and made sure Shaw played a lot of deliveries during the early part of the partnership. Soon, Iyer started smashing ball even after the dismissal of Shaw getting out in the 13th over after scoring 66 runs off 41 deliveries.
Rishabh Pant also had a lot of fun in the middle as the duo smashed the likes of Pat Cummins and Kamlesh Nagarkoti. On the other hand, Iyer got to his fifty in just 26 balls and raced to 88 in the next 12 deliveries. At one stage, it felt as if DC would end up scoring more than 240 runs, but Andre Russell bowled an exceptional final over conceding only 7 runs which restricted DC to 228 runs for the loss of four wickets after 20 overs.
KKR’s obsession with sticking to Sunil Narine continued in the steep chase of 229, but he was dismissed in the second over itself by Anrich Nortje. Nitish Rana and Shubman Gill then stitched a partnership as they added 64 runs in less than seven overs, but Amit Mishra spoiled the party and changed things dramatically. Andre Russell and then Shreyas Iyer brought back Kagiso Rabada, who got successful in dismissing Russell.
Dinesh Karthik’s poor form with the bat continued even as Rana batted well before getting out on 58 off 35 balls with four sixes and as many fours. In the pursuit of quick runs, KKR were reduced to 122/6 in the 14th over leaving Eoin Morgan and Rahul Tripathi a lot to do. The equation came down to 78 runs off the last 24 balls and suddenly tables turned overs and Tripathi came to the party this time smashing Marcus Stoinis for three sixes and a four.
The tables turned on its head suddenly with KKR needing only 31 runs off the last two overs. Anrich Nortje was handed over the crucial penultimate over and he dismissed Eoin Morgan to stun the KKR camp, who scored 44 runs off just 18 balls. Marcus Stonis came out to bowl the final over when KKR requiring 26 runs and he nailed the yorker to dismiss Tripathi. The latter’s dismissal was the final nail in the coffin as KKR ended 18 runs short in Sharjah.
Anrich Nortje has always been a go-to bowler for DC and he didn’t disappoint when the team needed him. Bowling his first over in the powerplay he managed to scalp Sunil Narine on his first delivery itself. He completed his spell after scalping 3 wickets and conceded just 33 runs.
After failing on a consistent basis in the first three matches of the IPL 2020, DC skipper, Shreyas Iyer was desperate to score and he roared when it mattered the most. Iyer amassed as many as 88 runs in just 38 deliveries with the help of seven 4s and a six 6s.
It’s been the second consecutive game when Sunil Narine has failed miserably. KKR hasn’t managed to win a single match besides the match es against RR and SRH.
After bowling match-winning spells against RR and SRH, Pat Cummins has been fairly inconsistent for RR. In order to Knight Riders have a chance to reach the playoffs, Cummins needs to be more consistent.