On Thursday, Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad in a dramatic come-from-behind victory to earn their fourth victory of the year despite a less-than-stellar effort. To hand SRH their sixth defeat of the year, various players each played their part at different moments in Hyderabad.
SRH seize the initiative
When Kolkata Knight Riders decided to bat, Marco Jansen struck twice, dismissing Rahmanullah Gurbaz for a first-ball duck and then removing Venkatesh Iyer. This put Kolkata Knight Riders in trouble from the start. During the Powerplay, the hosts added another wicket thanks to a fortunate play by Kartik Tyagi, who got Jason Roy to edge a swipe to short third.
Through the middle: steady
Through the middle overs, Rinku Singh, Nitish Rana, and Andre Russell successfully contained and consolidated much of KKR’s initial damage. Rana struggled with timing on a pitch that was holding up a little bit while Rinku was the first to get underway. However, Rana also found his footing in the 10th over, smashing Kartik for a boundary and then two sixes off consecutive deliveries to help the visitors reach 90 for 3 at the halfway point of their innings.
Soon enough, Markram put an end to Rana’s stay when he used his off-break to cause a top edge and dove forward to complete a return catch. However, Russell quickly asserted himself by hitting the offspinner for six straight down the ground, which had little of an effect on KKR’s momentum.
Once Russell took the field, Rinku’s innings were put on the back burner. Russell’s quick but brief 15-ball 24 helped KKR reach 127 for 4 by the end of the 14th over.
When Andre Russell attempted to top edge Mayank Markande’s wide delivery to backward point in the 15th over, his innings came to an end. KKR’s attempts to go big failed more quickly the harder they tried. T Natarajan was very efficient bowling the final and third last over, ultimately limiting the visitors to 171 for 9. Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals throughout the late overs.
Momentum changes once more
This time in KKR’s favor. Abhishek Sharma chipped the first ball of the innings over the infield on the offside for a boundary to give Mayank Agarwal and the team a strong start. Mayank Agarwal quickly joined as well. The openers added 29 runs in only 2.5 overs thanks to a little bit of desire and a little bit of inaccuracy from KKR’s relatively inexperienced new-ball pair of Harshit Rana and Vaibhav Arora, until Mayank was undone by Rana’s pace and bounce and gloved one to the ‘keeper.
After that, SRH’s innings started to lose momentum. Due to Shardul Thakur’s slower length delivery, Abhishek was caught off guard and ended up holing out to backward square leg. Soon after Russell began the attack, the out-of-shape Rahul Tripathi joined it and welcomed Russell with a 4, 6, and 4. However, his at-bat was ended when he ramped the pacer to the fine-leg fielder. Anukul Roy quickly reduced SRH to 54 for 4 after the powerplay by having Harry Brook caught leg-before for a fourth-ball duck. SRH were in trouble despite a fast start.
The South African pair of Markram and Klaasen put together a 70-run stand in 7.5 overs after desperately needing a partnership. Klaasen was at ease on a somewhat challenging surface, while the captain was having difficulty getting his time together. He got off to a poor start before chasing Anukul and hammering the spinner for two sixes in the eleventh over. Markram, who had only scored 11 runs in his first 22 pitches, then sliced Chakravarthy for two boundaries to help his innings gain momentum.
The late failure
When Klaasen mistimed a throw to deep midwicket in the 15th over, SRH was in a good position and only needed 48 runs from 35 balls. The equation had been reduced from 19 to 27 when Markram was dismissed a few overs later, with Abdul Samad and Marco Jansen remaining in the middle.
However, Jansen’s stay was cut short by a superb catch by Gurbaz behind the wicket, and despite a fine boundary by Bhuvneshwar Kumar through the cover area, SRH, who needed nine runs in the final over and was facing a fairly wet ball, could only muster three runs against Chakravarthy.