Recent Match Report – KKR vs SRH 3rd Match 2024

Kolkata Knight Riders 208 for 7 (Russell 64*, Salt 54, Ramandeep 35, Natarajan 3-32) beat Sunrisers Hyderabad 204 for 7 (Klaasen 63, Abishek 32, Agarwal 32) by four runs

With momentum on their side, Sunrisers had a dream start to the 20th over when Klaasen pulled Harshit for six over square leg. But the seamer followed it up with two singles, two wickets and one dot in the next five balls to seal the deal.

Earlier, it was Sunil Narine’s 1 for 19 in four overs on a batting-friendly surface – the spell included zero boundaries – which kept Sunrisers quiet through the middle overs. His economy of 4.75 was a complete outlier on a surface where bowlers, whether experienced or not, went for a lot. That had given KKR the upper hand with three overs to go, with Sunrisers needing 60 in 18 balls. But Klaasen’s 29-ball 63, laced with eight sixes, dragged Sunrisers back into the contest.

KKR also had Andre Russell, Phil Salt and Ramandeep Singh to thank for their first-innings score of 208. From 51 for 4, the hosts rebuilt courtesy Salt’s 40-ball 54 on KKR debut and a 17-ball 35 from Ramandeep. Russell put the finishing touches to the KKR innings by smacking seven sixes in his 25-ball, unbeaten 64.

Klaasen’s near-heist

The last 18 months have belonged to Klaasen, who has turned into a rampaging spin-hitter to go with his strong range of shots against pace. He came in at No. 5 with Sunrisers needing 102 in 8.2 overs. Even though he started slowly, he found his range against Varun Chakravarthy, racing from six in seven balls to 18 off 12 with the help of two sixes in the 14th over.

When Chakravarthy returned for the 18th and the target looking improbable, Klaasen again opened his shoulders by pummelling two more sixes. Then when Mitchell Starc, the most expensive player in IPL history, returned to close out the game in the 19th over, Klaasen clubbed him for three sixes in a 26-run over.

With 47 runs scored in the 18th and 19th overs, Sunrisers had turned the game around. The 12-ball assault had sent ESPNcricinfo’s forecaster swinging from being 99.27% in favour of KKR to putting Sunrisers at 81.95% favourites before the final over. However, Klaasen’s dismissal at the hands of Harshit, one ball after smacking his eighth six, deflated Sunrisers and allowed KKR to close the game out.

Russell mauls Bhuvneshwar and Co

With just six overs to go in the first innings, KKR were 123 for 6 and still needed a glorious finish if they were to reach 200.

After scoring two runs in his first five balls, Russell ruined Mayank Markande’s bowling figures by muscling three sixes in the 16th over – two down the ground and one over midwicket – to race to 20 off 11.

When Bhuvneshwar Kumar returned for his back-end spell, Russell made full use of a favourable match-up to maul the experienced pacer, hitting six and four in the 17th, with Rinku Singh adding another boundary in an 18-run over.

The 18th bowled by T Natarajan also went for 15, and when Bhuvneshwar returned for the 19th, Russell clobbered him for four, six, six and four – using his power and the small boundaries to muscle 26 runs. In the process, he also hit his 200th six for KKR in franchise cricket and reached his fifty in 20 balls.

That helped KKR touch 200 in 19 overs even as Rinku fell for a 13-ball 25 to become Natarajan’s third scalp of the night. Russell finished unbeaten on 64 at a strike rate of 256 as Sunrisers conceded 85 runs in the last five overs to end up chasing an improbable 209.

Narine stifles Sunrisers after powerplay

Twin 32s at a rapid pace from openers Mayank Agarwal and Abhishek Sharma gave Sunrisers the kind of start they needed to chase down 209, a target that would’ve required the fourth-highest chase in IPL history. But both fell in the sixth and eighth overs to short balls from Harshit and Russell respectively. It was around that time, just after the powerplay had ended, that Shreyas Iyer went to Narine.

Narine bowled consistently on a good length and found turn in both directions to keep Rahul Tripathi and Markram quiet. He conceded only two runs in his opening over and very nearly had Tripathi dismissed in his second when the batter mistimed a slog sweep. But a dropped chance from Chakravarthy gave Tripathi a second life.

Tripathi would then receive a third life when Narine had him pinned in front of the stumps in the 11th over. But the umpire turned the appeal down and KKR did not review it.

When Narine finally dismissed Tripathi in the 17th over, caught at deep square leg off the penultimate ball of his spell, he let out a roar, a rare display of emotion, as he earned just rewards for his impressive spell. Narine finished with eight dots bowled and zero boundaries conceded.

Salt finds support in Ramandeep

The KKR innings had begun disastrously when Narine – promoted to open again – fell cheaply to a run-out. Then Natarajan picked off Venkatesh Iyer (7) and Shreyas (0) in the same over to leave KKR 32 for 3.

That forced Salt to rein his shot-making in, having initially started his innings with a hat-trick of sixes off Marco Jansen. The KKR batters, Salt included, struggled when Bhuvneshwar bowled in the fourth-stump channel in the powerplay, and by the eighth over they were 51 for 4 when Nitish Rana reverse swept Markande to backward point.

But in No. 6 Ramandeep, Salt found a partner who could counterattack. Ramandeep was not intimidated by the short-ball barrage attempted by Sunrisers captain Pat Cummins or Marco Jansen. He pulled both bowlers for sixes in the ninth and 11th overs respectively and then began the 12th with an inside-out six off Shahbaz Ahmed. He was eventually caught at cover by a diving Markande off Cummins for a 17-ball 35 but by then he had ensured the KKR innings did not stagnate in the middle overs.

Salt finally reached his third IPL fifty in the 14th over off Markande’s bowling and looked disappointed when he fell for 54 in the same over. However, a KKR recovery from 51 for 4 to 119 for 6 in the space of 6.2 overs had given Rinku and Russell enough of a platform to capitalise on. And capitalise they did.

Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @sreshthx

Source link