Home INDIA IPL 2024: Venkatesh Iyer’s Fifty, Sunil Narine’s Cameo Carry KKR To Seven-Wicket Win Over RCB | Cricket News

IPL 2024: Venkatesh Iyer’s Fifty, Sunil Narine’s Cameo Carry KKR To Seven-Wicket Win Over RCB | Cricket News

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IPL 2024: Venkatesh Iyer's Fifty, Sunil Narine's Cameo Carry KKR To Seven-Wicket Win Over RCB | Cricket News

A brutal fifty from Venkatesh Iyer acted as a catalyst for Kolkata Knight Riders’ smooth seven-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bengaluru in their IPL match at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium on Friday. Venkatesh’s 50 off 30 balls (3×4, 4×6) and stunning blitzes from openers Sunil Narine (47, 22b, 2×4, 5×6) and Phil Salt (30, 20b, 2×4, 2×6) propelled the Knight Riders past the 183-run target set by the RCB set for them a set built around Virat Kohli’s skillful unbeaten 83. The KKR batters never got bogged down by slow delivery or RCB bowlers as they hunted for the target in just 16.5 overs.

Their approach that night was best exemplified by Venkatesh, who is doing his best to regain his relevance in white-ball formats, who added 75 runs for the third wicket with skipper Shreyas Iyer (39 not out).

The left-hander found his range from the start, while pacer Alzarri Joseph bore the brunt of his aggressive intentions.

He quickly smashed the West Indian for 20 runs in an over that featured two sixes over cover and mid-wicket and a sent four to third man, in addition to a leg-bye boundary.

Shreyas, who was dropped at five by Yash Dayal off the very impressive local pacer Vysakh Vijayakumar (1/23), was just in the supporting role tonight.

But for that sharp victory, KKR should thank Narine and Salt profusely, who subdued RCB bowlers in the Power Play with astonishing power-hitting.

The visitors’ chase got off to a frenetic start as Narine and Salt scored 86 runs in just 6.3 overs through a series of dazzling shots.

Salt caused the carnage, smoking pacer Mohammed Siraj for 18 runs in the very first over, finding two sixes and a four.

Narine followed suit. After smashing Joseph for two sixes in the third over, the southpaw smashed the figures of left-arm pacer Dayal, smashing together 21 runs, including a four and two sixes in three consecutive balls in the sixth over.

There was a hint of slowness in the Chinnaswamy surface but there was hardly any attempt by the RCB bowlers to exploit this with slower balls like their Knight Riders counterparts.

It took a yorker from left-arm spinner Mayank Dagar to break the opening wicket partnership as Narine failed to block the full delivery on the off-stump.

But by then he had done his job.

Earlier, Kohli’s skillful unbeaten fifty formed the basis of RCB’s competitive 182 for six.

Kohli (83, 59b, 4×4, 4×6) and Cameron Green (33 off 21b) milked 65 runs from 42 balls for the second wicket, the most important alliance in RCB innings, as the home side produced a two-faced effort on a track that was on the slower side.

An archetypal cameo from Dinesh Karthik (20, 8b, 3×6) added gravitas to the RCB total towards the end as usual.

Captain Faf du Plessis left early as the Royal Challengers captain’s attempt to catch pacer Harshit Rana ended up in the hands of Mitchell Starc inside the circle.

But a period of stability followed as Kohli and Green kept RCB on the court with a busy score, reaching 61 for 1 in the Power Play segment.

Kohli dished out drives and lofts over covers, a new addition to his batting, sweeps and slog sweep to get his runs, but the shot of the night was a whack from Starc that sailed a six.

In fact, no other shot captures Kohli’s batting as well as the swat flick – a child of his desire to find newer ways to maintain bowlers’ dominance.

A simple flick of the wrist and the power of a strong bottom hand can turn this traditionally soft shot into a vicious running option.

Kohli brought up his fifty in 36 balls while other batters, barring Green, struggled with the timing.

But Green wasn’t really concerned with such technical angles, as his hitting was all about brute force.

Narine, playing his 500th T20 match, was dealt a blow when Green took 15 runs from the spinner’s first over, including a sequence of 4, 4, 6 – a sweep, blow past cover and a hoick over long-on.

However, the budding alliance was broken when Green’s attempt at a pull-off saw Andre Russell bounce the ball onto his stumps.

Glenn Maxwell, who was dropped twice on 11 and 21, en route a 19-ball 28 failed to capitalize on the generosity of KKR fielders as his luck eventually ran out against Narine.

A strike from the West Indian spinner ended at deep point at the hands of Rinku Singh, and Maxwell had to depart after adding 42 runs for the third wicket with Kohli.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by WhatsNew2Day staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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