IPL 2022: All-round Russell play-off dream survives Kolkata – Uttarbanga Sambad
Kolkata Knight Riders: 16/7 (20 overs)
Sunrisers Hyderabad: 123/7 (20 overs)
Pune: Shreyas Iyer was smiling. In the beginning there was no life in laughter. Andre Russell changed the dry wood smile. Nitish Rana was joking with him (22/3) at the edge of 22 yards with bat. Looking at the TV screen, neither of them seemed to be in a good mood at first. The picture changed with the match.
Mood is the real king in words. And this is the problem of Kolkata Knight Riders. Openers can’t trust. The middle order fails by the rules. There is no word for continuity in the batting order. According to the rules, Joy Baba Dre Ras (became a member of 2000 Run Club in IPL today) has to chant the mantra. He has to ensure victory with the ball by trusting the team with the bat. The best Caribbean King of the match wants that!
Familiar pictures. Famous screenplay. KKR was under pressure after losing the toss at regular intervals from the start after winning the toss and choosing to bat at a slow 22-yard line wrapped in light grass at the MCA Stadium in Pune. In the last match against Mumbai, Venkatesh Iyer (6) hinted at returning to form. Today Marco Johnson’s (30/1) pace was bold. Experienced Ajinkya Rahane (28) was desperate for rhythm. Did not succeed. Nitish (28 off 16 balls) came down to number three and tried to increase the team’s run. In the same over, Umran Malik (33/3) pushed Nitish-Rahane back.
Russell (unbeaten 49 off 26 balls) appeared as the Messiah of the Knights after overcoming the fire of Umran’s speed. With Sam Billings (34 off 29 balls). Adding 63 off 44 balls for the sixth wicket partnership, they reached KKR’s secure score of 16/7 in the allotted 20 overs. Russell proved that he is the magician by scoring 20 runs in the last over. In reply, Hyderabad lost wickets at regular intervals and stopped at 123/7. The Knights survived the play-off dream by winning the all-round Russell by 54 runs. LKR rose to number six in the list with 12 points from 13 matches.
Twenty-two yards at MCA Stadium was not ideal for stroke play. The ball fell and came to a halt. Such incidents have been seen in most of the matches of the 15th IPL. Moreover, Thangarasu Natarajan (43/1), Umran, Bhubaneswar Kumar (28/1), the lack of skill of the front-runners in bowling, professionalism and discipline in bowling has come to the fore again and again. Among them, Rinku Singh (5) got involved in a debate while taking DRS after spending time as a lbw in Natarajan’s Yorker.
If you win, there will be a chance. In such a situation, Ken Williamson (9), Rahul Tripathi (9) and Aiden Markramra (32 off 25 balls) tried but failed in the face of the Knights’ challenge. Only Abhishek Sharma (43 off 26 balls) tried to fight back. Sunil Narain (34/1), Varun Chakraborty (25/1), Umesh Yadav (19/1), Tim Saudis (23/2) got the rhythm and the batsmen of Nizam’s city sank in the play-off battle.