Match 8 – Kolkata Knight Riders vs Rajasthan Royals
Since Gautam Gambhir has taken over, KKR has been a different team to watch out for. The players’ talents are utilized effectively, the bench strength is well adjudged and the captain is always pumped up. If not enough, they still went on to win the IPL – 5 with the help of the most talked about mystery spinner boy, Sunil Narine. More than the awesome bowling and huge spins, Narine is talked about for his boringly easy expressions he gives after taking wickets.
That being said, Royals have had a great start to the series. How much ever you watch Rahul Dravid bat, you can never have enough of him. To add to this, you have the explosive Shane Watson joining the team from this match onward for the Royals. He has been seen practicing very well, bowling in the nets but the doubt remains if he is fit to bowl since he has not been bowling for Australia for quite sometime in the recent past.
The end to all the suspense, Gambhir wins the toss for KKR and decides to bowl first.
A classic pitch and out-field to play cricket on. In fact it looks like a pitch from Australia.-good bounce and fast outfield.
Brett Lee bowls an awesome first over to Shane Watson and other than a wide, gives off nothing. Tight line bowling and hence rewarded with the wicket of Watson in his next over. A very bad start to the IPL journey for Watson especially when there were so much expectations from him. And then in comes the man in form, Rahul Dravid. Handling Narine, Lee, Kallis along with Rahane, Royals make good progress. Beautiful timing and good cricket happening all around for the Royals.
But! We never mentioned the part timer, Rajat Bhatia. A very important player to have, with his medium pacers and one who cleans up Dravid in the 8th over.
Can Sunil Narine be left behind? A very good batting from Rahane scoring 36 of 34 balls comes to an end at the hands of the mystery man. And a delivery later, send country-mate Cooper packing too.
Suddenly the score becomes 101-5 in 16 overs with Narine to bowl another over in the last 4.
A lovely cameo from Brad Hodge and some late explosions from Yagnik, take the Royals to 144-6 in 20 overs.
Just a thought, Royals are playing Shaun Tait today. If Kallis and Lee get so lovely a bounce, what can we imagine to expect when Tait bowls his bazookas. Will have to wait to watch!
The animated Sreeshanth starts off the proceedings for the Royals and gets hammered for a boundary and a long six by Gambhir. 14 runs after the first over Shaun Tait comes in to bowl the second over and bowls it everywhere other than the stump line. Not at all a good start for the bowling stack by the royals.
Because of a not so good start of bowling by the mainstream bowlers, Dravid hands over the ball to the youngster Rahul Shukla.
And guess what, he gets 2 wickets in the over of Bisla and Kallis- the shocker for KKR being, getting Kallis in the first legal delivery he faced for a golden duck. Bowling with heart! Well done young man.
Definitely the STAR PLUS Naya Soch Player. Idiotically funny isn’t it ?
FUN STAT: Shaun Tait bowls the fastest ball of the tournament so far. 3.6th delivery. 150.1 KMPH.
So the local boys doing it for the Royals currently, Siddhart Trivedi gets Manoj Tiwary plumb in the front. And not much later gets an edge of Gambhir to the keeper. This is what you call the local power. Come on guys, show the world India’s young talent. Awesome display of keeping things simple and doing well.In comes Yusuf Pathan to join Eoin Morgan out in the center. After Dhoni, Morgan is definitely the best finisher of limited overs cricket I believe. But huge task in front of him today.
The next over Yusuf Pathan messes it up on a delivery by the person who was hugely responsible for the Royal’s win over Delhi: Cooper.
And Trivedi’s next target is Shukla who trying to get it over long-on falls. It gets from bad to worse for KKR. 9 overs and 90 odd required with Morgan and the tail-enders. Wait! KKR are 6 down but Rajat Bhatia comes out to bat. This isn’t the tail… This is a batting line-up, Aussies would be proud of.
A single-handed battle being played on from Eoin Morgan,wickets ‘crumble and tremble’ on the other side. With 18 deliveries to go, 36 runs required. Mathematically, just 2 runs per ball. Not a difficult task. But that’s 12 runs an over. At least two boundaries needed every over to get close to give KKR any chance.
Morgan doing it for KKR here. 13 of the 18th over of Tait which includes a gorgeous flick over fine leg for a six.
Certainly won’t be the man-of-the-match, but again will be highly responsible for Royal’s win against KKR tonight, Kevon Cooper, cleans up Morgan in the first ball of the 19th over to make it 9 down for KKR and leave KKR with 23 required of 11 balls. It’s just a formality to finish off the proceedings now. Cooper finishes what he deserved in the last ball of the over. Shami hits the ball high on the air and Rahane holds on to a good high catch at deep mid-wicket. KKR all out for 125 and Royals win by 19 runs.
The Man-of-the-Match goes to the rightly deserved Siddhart Triwedi. Well done boy!
Dravid is ecstatic. Royals make it 2 in 2. Jump high on the points table.
Not getting on conclusions now. Still a long way to go. Long long tournament. Wait and watch!
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