New Delhi, May 15 (IANS) Kolkata Knight Riders overcame a top-order collapse to defeat second placed Chennai Super Kings by six wickets in the 2023 IPL on Sunday evening at the MA Chidambaram stadium in Chennai.
Kolkata lost their first three wickets inside the powerplay, however, skipper Nitish Rana (57*, 44b, 6×4, 1×6) and Rinku Singh (54, 43b, 4×4, 3×6) stitched a valuable 99-run partnership to take their side home.
Earlier, a disciplined bowling effort by the Knight Riders ensured Chennai were restricted to a modest 144 with Shivam Dube top scoring with 48 runs off 34 balls. Sunil Narine was the pick of the bowlers and returned with figures of 2/15. With this win, four teams are on 12 points and only separated by net run rate – Royal Challengers Bangalore, Rajasthan Royals, Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab Kings. Chennai Super Kings remain in the second place with 15 points.
Rinku Singh has been the wonder boy for Kolkata Knight Riders in this season of the IPL. He continued his brilliant form with yet another match winning knock, leading to JioCinema IPL expert Parthiv Patel showering him with plaudits.
“He has shown his range yet again. Today, he came to bat during the powerplay and the way he played against Ravindra Jadeja, there was great maturity in his shot selection. He is showing different dimensions of his batting, like we saw that he was playing in the lower order previously but today he came and batted in the powerplay and played till there were just a few runs left. Generally, we have seen him staying not out till the end and the most important sign of a good batsman is to win the match for his side. Though unfortunately, he was run out today, but he brought the match to a position from where KKR couldn’t have lost.”
After losing three quick wickets, the Knight Riders were definitely in a spot of bother. However, the 99-run partnership between Nitish Rana and Rinku Singh helped the side collect two crucial points.
Brett Lee spoke highly of this key partnership and said, “On a wicket that was conducive to spin bowling, it was the slower balls that did a good job but they put the bowlers under pressure. Now for someone like a Moeen Ali, they had to make him pay. They attacked him first up, they took him off his length and what that does, it actually puts the bowler under immense pressure. So, they found a way to make it fall back in there, I guess their asset tonight.”
He added, “They used their feet, they had some shots down the ground and they weren’t afraid to just manoeuvre the ball around when they had to as well. It wasn’t just about big power hitting, they took their ones and twos and when the boundary ball was there, they smacked it for four or six.”