Andre Russell’s blinder helps KKR win thriller

Heinrich Klaasen’s whirlwind knock went in vain as Kolkata Knight Riders beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by four runs in a thrilling game to start their campaign in IPL 2024 with a win.

Chasing a huge total of 209, SRH were off to a solid start with Mayank Agarwal and Abhishek Sharma adding 60 runs for the first wicket. From that stage, KKR kept striking at regular intervals as the the openers as well as the likes of Rahul Tripathi and Aiden Markram failed to convert their starts.

At 145 for 5 in the 17th over, the match was looking all but over for SRH before Klaasen and Shahbaz Ahmed turned the game on its head. In the 18th over, they collected 21 runs before collecting 26 runs in the 19th. With 13 runs needed off the final over, SRH were the favourites to win the game.

Klaasen further improved his team’s chances by hitting Harshit Rana’s first ball for a six. However, Rana bounced back in style, dismissing both Shahbaz and Klaasen while conceding only two more runs to power his team to a thrilling win.

KKR vs SRH: KKR innings

Earlier in the game, KKR recovered from a poor start to post a big total of 208 for 7 in the allotted 20 overs after being asked to bat first. Sunil Narine and Phil Salt opened the innings but their stand could not last long. While Salt got going by hitting three sixes in the second over, Narine was run out for just two.

The likes of Venkatesh Iyer (7), Shreyas Iyer (0) and Nitish Rana (9) also failed to get going as KKR found themselves reeling at 51 for 4. Ramandeep Singh and Phil Salt then steadied the ship with a crucial stand, taking the score past the 100-run mark. Pat Cummins broke the stand by dismissing Ramandeep for 35 before Mayank Markande dismissed Salt for 54.

At 119 for 6 in the 14th over, KKR were in deep trouble and were looking unlikely to post a 180-plus total. However, Andre Russell played a blinder, scoring a 20-ball fifty to power KKR to a huge total. He and Rinku Singha added 81 runs for the seventh wicket. While Rinku departed for 23 runs in the final over, Russell remained unbeaten on 64. His knock came off 25 balls and was studded with three fours and seven sixes. For SRH, Natarajan picked up three wickets while Mayank Markande claimed two wickets.

KKR vs SRH scorecard:

KKR vs SRH: KKR innings
KKR vs SRH: SRH innings

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