KOLKATA BEAT KINGS XI PUNJAB BY 31 RUNS
Kolkata posted a mammoth 245-6, their highest ever total in IPL.
KKR outbatted Kings XI Punjab in a high-scoring affair, registering a 31-run victory here on Saturday to stay in the hunt for the IPL play-offs.
Determined to end their twomatch losing streak, Kolkata posted this edition’s highest total of 245/6, thanks to opening batsman Sunil Narine’s 75 off 36 and skipper Dinesh Karthik’s 50 not out off 23.
West Indian all-rounder Andre Russell, who scored a brisk 31 off 14, took two wickets in two balls, while Narine removed the dangerous Lokesh Rahul (66 off 29) . Skipper Ravichandran Ashwin (45 off 22) and Aaron Finch (34 off 20) tried their best but Kolkata’s huge total was way out of reach, with Punjab managing 214/8.
KKR were given a good start by opener Chris Lynn 27 and Narine with the visitors racing to 59/1 after six overs.
Lynn looked tentative from the outset, almost chopping the ball onto his stumps in only the second and third ball of the match off Mohit Sharma. The dashing Australian was removed by the brilliant Tye to bring Robin Uthappa to the crease.
Along with Narine, the pair helped KKR to 106/1 after 10 overs. But medium pacer Andrew Tye had other plans as he sent both Narine and Uthappa back in the hunt in one over. Russell was promoted to No.4 to keep the onslaught going and together with Karthik, the duo took the bowlers to the cleaners in a 76run fourth wicket partnership. In the final over, 17 runs came off Sran (1/48) as Shubman Gill remained unbeaten on 16 off 8 balls alongwith Javon Searles (6).
For the hosts, purple cap holder Australian pacer Tye (4/41) was by far the pick of the bowlers.
During the chase, Punjab looked on course riding Rahul’s 29-ball 66 but Narine (1/44) got the better of him. Russell (3/41) dismissed compatriot Chris Gayle and Mayank Agarwal (0) in the fourth and fifth ball of the sixth over when they were cruising at 57/0.
Karun Nair failed to aid Punjab, scoring three runs before being dismissed by Russell. Few overs later, Rahul, who was going hammer and tong, was bowled by Narine as he missed the ball, which then hit his legs before rolling on to the stump, as Punjab lost theiur fourth wicket for 93 runs in nine overs.
Later, Australian opener Aaron Finch (34; 20; 3x6) tried to stage a comeback but Javon Searles (1/52) took his wicket. IANS
Sunil Narine in action against Kings XI Punjab at Holkar stadium in Indore on Saturday.