Our 100th IPL win couldn't have come at a better time!
Kolkata Knight Riders started their IPL 2021 campaign with a clinical 10-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in Chennai today (April 11), courtesy some spectacular batting from Nitish Rana (80 off 56) and Rahul Tripathi (53 off 29), and some clinical mid-over and death bowling spells.
Good to hav our 100th IPL match win. Well done boys...@KKRiders @prasidh43 @DineshKarthik @NitishRana_27 #Rahul @Russell12A @harbhajan_singh ( good to see u even if briefly )@Sah75official @patcummins30 actually all were so good to watch.— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) April 11, 2021
Prasidh Krishna starred with 2-35 while Pat Cummins, Shakib Al Hasan and Andre Russell pitched in with one wicket each. Russell bowled brilliantly in the last over, where the Orange army needed 22 runs, to restrict SRH to 177-5.
Earlier, SRH had won the toss and put the Knights in to bat first. Even though Shubman Gill was cleaned up by Rashid Khan for 15 (13), Rana and Tripathi put up a 93-run partnership (50 balls) to lay the foundation for KKR's 187-run total in the stipulated 20 overs.
Rana (9x4s 4x6s) was in exquisite form, sweeping, pulling, driving all around the park. He found an able partner in Tripathi as the duo ripped into the SRH attack. After Tripathi was holed out by SRH keeper Wriddhiman Saha, running backwards, KKR appeared to have lost some momentum briefly.
Andre Russell (5) started off with a boundary but couldn't last long and a strategical Rashid got the better of him for the fourth time in 10 meetings. Mohammad Nabi added two consecutive jolts in the next over as he eliminated both Rana and captain Eoin Morgan (2) to reduce KKR to 160-5. Had it not been for Vice-captain Dinesh Karthik's late 9-ball 22* cameo, KKR would have struggled to cross 180.
For SRH, Jonny Bairstow, stole the show with a 40-ball 55 and as long as he was at the crease, it looked like KKR were in for some trouble. Manish Pandey also contributed a healthy 44-ball 61* but he ran out of aggression from the non-striker's end after Cummins had dismissed Bairstow.
KKR will next face Mumbai Indians on April 13 at the same ground.