Story of the first ten overs
In our first match of the 10th season, Gautam Gambhir won the toss and had no hesitation in bowling first. Gambhir went with a line-up of 6 batsmen, 2 all-rounders and 3 bowlers. Trent Boult and Chris Woakes make their KKR debut and Chris Lynn makes his way in the starting XI. 3 spinners in the team with Kuldeep Yadav joining the experienced duo of Sunil Narine and Piyush Chawla.
It was a decent start by the Gujarat Lions as the opening pair of Brendon McCullum and Jasoy Roy scored 22 in the first 3 overs. Piyush Chawla gave the breakthrough as Jason Roy miscued the sweep shot. The top edge went on the square leg where Yusuf Pathan held a good catch running backwards. Lions’ captain, Suresh Raina joined McCullum as they put the bad balls away and respected the good ones. After a 50-run partnership, young Kuldeep Yadav trapped Brendon McCullum. The veteran made 35 runs in 24 balls as he missed a good ball. Yadav continued to trouble the Gujarat batsmen, especially Finch as he could not read the flippers. At the end of 10 overs, Lions were 91/2.
Knights pull back things
Kuldeep picked up his second wicket as Aaron Finch looked to clear the long-off boundary. Suryakumar Yadav ran a few paces and completed a good catch. Suresh Raina continued with his ‘pleasing’ shots as 100 was up in the 12th over. Karthik joined the captain as they picked up ones and twos in the mid overs. Raina was given two lives before he completed his 29th IPL 50. Karthik gave him good company as wickets dried down. They upped the ante as 11 runs and 12 runs were scored in the 17th and 18th overs respectively. Boult picked up his first wicket in the last over as Dinesh Karthik was caught in the deep. Gujarat Lions were 153/3 after 18 overs and finished with 183/4 after 20 overs.
For us, Kuldeep was the most effective bowler as he finished with 2/25 in his 4 overs. Chawla and Boult picked up 1 wickets each.
We have been terrific in chasing till now. Watch out these amazing stats meanwhile. http://bit.ly/MilestonesKKR
The chase begins
Gautam Gambhir has a new partner as he opened with Chris Lynn. The duo was off in a flash as they raced to 20 in 2 overs. Chris Lynn smashed the first six of this season as he played a big shot at the mid-wicket boundary. Lynn went berserk later as he smashed a four and six of consecutive balls off Gony’s over. The duo took advantage of the Powerplay overs as they posted 73 for no wickets.
But it was Lynn who stole the limelight as the Aussie literally disseminated the Lions' bowlers. He reached his 50 in just 19 balls and showed no signs of stopping. Gautam Gambhir followed Lynn as he scored his 32nd fifty in IPL. The openers didn't stopped there and continued free-flowing shots as Lions search for the first wicket continued. The asking rate dropped down drastically with Gambhir too joining the party as Raina looked for answers from his bowlers. At the end of 10 overs, we were sitting comfortably with 116 on the board.
The knockout punch
Big hits continued all the way with batsmen picking out gaps with ease. They also set the record partnership for the first wicket in IPL history as Lynn hit Kulkarni for 6, 4 and 6 off three deliveries. The target was chased down in 14.5 overs as Lynn remained unbeaten on 93 and Gambhir on 76. It was a top-class batting performance and it was a great message sent to all oppositions about our arrival in this year's tournament.