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KKR vs DC: Skipper Iyer, Narine shine in a 44-run loss to the Capitals

An all-round performance from the Delhi Capitals led by Kuldeep Yadav’s 4 for 35 ensured the Kolkata Knight Riders fell 44 runs short in their chase of 216 at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai.

After being inserted to bat, Prithvi Shaw and David Warner reeled off nearly 82% runs scored in boundaries to score 68 in the power play with 11 boundaries and two sixes between them. Both went on to bring up their half-centuries before Varun Chakaravarthy bowled Shaw through the gate in the ninth over for the first breakthrough.

Rishabh Pant scored a quick-fire 14-ball 27 and by the time Andre Russell had him caught at third man, the Capitals had 148 on the board in the 13th over. Knight Riders struck back by picking four wickets for 18 runs at a time when the Capitals had racked up as many as 93 runs in the middle-overs (7-15 overs).

Axar Patel (22 off 14) and Shardul Thakur (29 off 11) provided the final flourish with a 49-run stand for the sixth wicket and smashed 39 off the last two overs to post a challenging 215 for 5, the highest total this season. For the Knight Riders, Sunil Narine was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 2-21, the only bowler apart from Russell to bowl at less than 10 an over, having scalped Lalit Yadav and Rovman Powell.

In reply, the Knight Riders could only score 43 for 2 in the power play after Khaleel Ahmed sent back both openers early. Shreyas Iyer and Nitish Rana (30 off 20) anchored the innings and shifted gears after the eighth over scoring 40 runs off three overs. In the process, Iyer brought up his maiden half-century as the skipper in Purple and Gold but was stumped the very next ball for a 33-ball 54.

“The positives we can take - the intent we showed,” Iyer said after the match. “Even though we didn't get off to a great start, the middle phase we played out really well from 7 to 15 overs. After that we wanted to continue with the run rate of 12rpo. It's not a difficult thing to do as a batsman but if you pace out the innings well, especially in the middle-overs, it's something we can take forward.”

Wickets continued to tumble as Ahmed and Yadav shared seven wickets between them. The required run-rate continued to climb up as tight death bowling saw the boundaries dry up despite Russell at the crease. Eventually, the Knight Riders were bowled out for 171 in what proved to be a bridge too far in pursuit of their highest run-chase in the IPL.