VIVO IPL 2021, Match 18 RR VS KKR – Match Report
Rajasthan Royals (RR) returned to winning ways after a victory over the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in Match 18 of the VIVO Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday.
Chris Morris shone with the ball with figures of 4/23 before skipper Sanju Samson led from the front with the bat and helped RR register a convincing victory over KKR.
Chasing a target of 134, RR had a new opening pair of Yashasvi Jaiswal, who was brought into the team, replacing Manan Vohra, and Jos Buttler in the middle.
Jaiswal started confidently and scored consecutive fours off Pat Cummins in the second over and later took on Shivam Mavi to produce the same result.
Varun Chakaravarthy was given the ball in the third over and the spinner trapped Buttler in front to provide an early breakthrough for KKR. Sanju Samson was off the mark with a four and joined Jaiswal, who was striking the ball well.
However, the left-handed opener played one into the hands of deep-cover and was back to the pavilion after Mavi struck in the fifth over.
Shivam Dube, who joined the skipper, smacked a six in the final over of powerplay as RR finished with 50-2 after 6 overs.
Dube and Samson added some crucial runs in the middle and didn’t shy away from playing the big shots. The duo smacked a six each and the required run-rate dipped below six at the end of nine overs, with RR at 77/2.
Chakaravarthy came back to bowl the 11th over and broke the 45-run stand after Dube found a leading edge that flew into the hands of the short-third man.
RR were searching for boundaries in the middle over and the pressure got the better of Rahul Tewatia as the left-hander was caught at fine-leg after trying to take on Prasidh Krishna.
KKR pacers – Mavi and Prasidh Krishna – were bowling their heart out and kept the pressure on Samson and David Miller as RR took the chase deep, with 21 required off the final four overs.
Miller took the pressure off the RR skipper and took charge of finishing the innings for RR, with Sanju smartly rotating the strike on the other end.
Miller and Samson finished the chase with a clear and calm intent as RR reached the target in the penultimate over, with six wickets in hand.
Earlier, KKR, who made one change to their playing XI – bringing in Shivam Mavi in place of Kamlesh Nagarkoti, were put in to bat first.
KKR openers Nitish Rana and Shubman Gill were watchful at the start against the two left-armers – Jaydev Unadkat and Chetan Sakariya, scoring 14 in the first three overs.
Gill hit a four in the fourth over and was given a life off Mustafizur Rahman’s bowling after the right-hander was dropped on 6 by Jasiwal.
RR were right on the money with the new ball and the pressure they applied helped them to scalp a wicket.
Gill tried to sneak in a single in the 6th over but Jos Buttler’s sharp fielding inside the circle denied a run to the opener and his excellent direct-hit sent Gill was on his way, with KKR 25-1 at the end of powerplay.
Rahul Tripathi, who came in at 3, was off the mark with a four while Rana finished the over in style with a six off Unadkat.
Rana tried to go hard and up the scoring rate in the 9th over but ended up edging the ball back to the keeper as Sakariya picked his first wicket of the innings.
KKR sent Narine in at 4 to increase the scoring rate through his fearless shots. The left-hander hit a four but was soon on his way after he top-edged a slower delivery by Unadkat to Yashasvi Jaiswal, who redeemed himself with a blinder.
Not much later, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan was run out in an unfortunate manner following a bit of miscommunication with his partner Tripathi as KKR lost their fourth wicket.
Tripathi smacked two sixes and was going strong on one end as Dinesh Karthik joined him. KKR were striking a tad over 6, with five overs to go after Karthik hit two fours.
Mustafizur was back with his slow cutters and the left-armer scalped an important wicket of the well-settled Tripathi who holed out in the deep after scoring.
KKR smashed 12 runs off the 17th over by Sakariya, who overstepped and conceded a four off a free-hit followed by a couple of wide deliveries.
Morris scalped two wickets in the eighteenth over. First, he got the better of Andre Russell, who just started to explode, and then the wicket of Karthik as both the batsmen couldn’t clear the fielders at long-on and extra-cover respectively.
After 9 runs coming in the penultimate over, Pat Cummins started the final over with a maximum. However, Morris added two more wickets to his tally with his impressive bowling. Cummins hit straight to Riyan Parag while Shivam Mavi was castled off the final delivery as KKR ended with a total of 133/9.
Brief Scores: Rajasthan Royals 134/4 (Sanju Samson 42*, David Miller 24; Varun Chakaravarthy 2/32) beat Kolkata Knight Riders 133/9 (Rahul Tripathi 36, Dinesh Karthik 25; Chris Morris 4/23) by 6 wickets.