Narine’s all-round brilliance propels KKR to the summit

Narine’s all-round brilliance propels KKR to the summit

Sunil Narine’s all-around brilliance guided Kolkata Knight Riders to a commanding 98-run victory over Lucknow Super Giants, propelling them to the top of the points table. KKR’s imposing total of 235/6 marked the first instance of any team surpassing the 200-run mark at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow. Lucknow Super Giants fell short in their chase, bowled out for 137.

Key Factor: Dominance in the Middle Overs

KKR not only sustained their early momentum during the middle overs with aggressive batting, largely courtesy of Sunil Narine, but also stifled LSG’s run chase with disciplined bowling. They snatched seven wickets in this phase, conceding a mere 60 runs, effectively halting LSG’s charge and securing a comprehensive victory.

Kolkata Knight Riders

Powerplay: Narine and Salt’s Rampage Continues

KKR: 70/1 (RR: 11.67, 11x4s, 2x6s)

Phil Salt and Sunil Narine extended their explosive form at the top, providing KKR with another blistering start. While Salt initiated proceedings with a boundary off the first ball, Narine unleashed an onslaught against Naveen ul Haq in the third over. Though the duo focused more on boundaries than sixes, they raced to 61 runs in just 25 balls before Salt departed. Despite Yash Thakur’s economical first over, KKR amassed the highest runs by any side against LSG this season during the powerplay.

Middle Overs: Narine’s Blitz and LSG’s Response

KKR: 101/2 (RR: 11.22, 4x4s, 8x6s)

Once the field restrictions were lifted, Narine went on a rampage, particularly targeting short balls. His assault was most brutal against Marcus Stoinis, whom he smashed for three sixes in four balls during the 11th over. Angkrish Raghuvanshi briefly joined the attack, allowing Narine to dominate. Though Narine had a couple of reprieves, he eventually fell victim to Ravi Bishnoi’s delivery. Andre Russell’s cameo further pressured the bowlers.

Death Overs: Ramandeep’s Late Flourish

KKR: 64/3 (RR: 12.80, 6x4s, 3x6s)

KKR struggled to accelerate in the death overs initially. Raghuvanshi’s departure, followed by Rinku Singh and Shreyas Iyer’s scratchy innings, slowed the momentum. However, Ramandeep Singh’s aggressive six-ball innings, comprising three sixes and a four, propelled KKR to the highest T20 total at the venue.

Lucknow Super Giants

Powerplay: Stoinis Provides Hope

LSG: 55/1 (RR: 9.17, 7x4s, 2x6s)

LSG adopted an aggressive approach in pursuit of the daunting target, with KL Rahul and Marcus Stoinis leading the charge. Despite an early setback, they maintained the attacking intent. Stoinis’s flurry of boundaries off Mitchell Starc and Harshit Rana’s six provided impetus to their chase.

Middle Overs: LSG’s Collapse

LSG: 60/7 (RR: 6.67, 3x4s, 4x6s)

However, LSG’s hopes were dashed as wickets tumbled in the middle overs. The collapse began with Rahul’s dismissal and continued unabated, with Deepak Hooda, Andre Russell, Stoinis, and Nicholas Pooran departing in quick succession. Narine and Varun Chakravarthy compounded LSG’s misery with further dismissals, leaving them unable to regain momentum.

Death Overs: Quick Dismissals

LSG: 7/2 in 1.1 overs (RR: 6.00, 0x4s, 1x6s)

Facing an inevitable defeat, LSG’s innings concluded swiftly, with KKR’s bowlers wrapping up the tail in just over an over.

What’s Next?

KKR will enjoy a substantial break before hosting Mumbai Indians at Eden Gardens on Saturday. Meanwhile, LSG will travel to Hyderabad to take on SRH on Wednesday.

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