19 April, 2018
According to the standings, Knight Riders are at the second spot with four points from four matches.
Kolkata's ace spinner Narine had a day to forget though after Rahane's assault on him with his four overs going for whopping 48 runs without fetching any wicket. The trio of Piyush Chawla (1/18), Kuldeep Yadav (1/23) and part-timer Nitish Rana (2/11) conceded 52 runs in 10 overs, sharing four wickets amongst themselves. However, the total was insufficient in the end as the Knight Riders coasted home with more than an over to spare and chased down the target. Kolkata suffered an early setback in their chase, losing Chris Lynn for a duck to K Gowtham but the pair of Sunil Narine (35 off 25 balls) and Robin Uthappa quickly got the innings back on track with a brisk 69-run stand to put KKR on course. Short has to improve his game tremendously because he is putting extra pressure on incoming batsmen and Royals are ending up with below par scores. Nearly all of those runs were made on hard, bouncy pitches. However, that success has not translated on the slow surfaces of India. On Wednesday, Short struggled against spin, neither making decisive forward movements to smother the turn nor using the depth of the crease to play the ball late.
In the end, the first three overs of the power-play yielded only nine runs with no boundaries to show for, a poor return for any limited-overs clash let alone a T20 match.
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Nitish Rana and Ben Stokes (R). Two quiet overs followed. Even Ben Stokes couldn't weave his magic as Rajasthan Royals crawled to 160 runs in 20 overs.
Rajasthan have struggled with consistency so far this season but they got off to a promising start thanks to a 54-run opening stand between Ajinkya Rahane and D'Arcy Short. His first ball was a punch to mid-off with a straight bat. Short was looking to play across the line, misses the ball and is bowled. RR would hope that the two master players get back into form when they lock horns with the Knight Riders.
But, as has been the case right through the season, their top order was bent on counter-attacking. But it did not hamper the innings much as Sunil and Robin Uthappa scored runs easily.
Two wickets apiece for Nitish Rana and Tom Curran helped KKR restrict the Royals to 160-8, before the visitors knocked off the runs with seven balls remaining. He has made a cautious effort to finish off games for his side.