The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) won their first match of the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 on Wednesday at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai, defeating the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by three wickets.
RCB bowlers, led by Wanindu Hasaranga’s four-wicket haul, restricted KKR to 128 runs before excellent lower-order contributions from RCB hitters got them over the line in a last-over thriller.
RCB did not modify their lineup from the previous game, despite needing 129 runs to win. In the first over of the innings, Umesh Yadav continued his excellent form from the previous game, dismissing Anuj Rawat for a duck.
After skipper du Plessis was caught inside the circle, the Royal Challengers lost both of their openers. Virat Kohli, who batted at number three, blasted two magnificent fours but was quickly despatched after being caught behind off Yadav’s bowling.
With David Willey and Sherfane Rutherford at the crease, RCB were 3 down for 36 at the end of the powerplay.
The batting combination relieved some pressure by attacking spinner Varun Chakaravarthy, who was struck for four and six respectively in the eighth over.
The Challengers were 59-3 at the conclusion of ten overs, thanks to some risk-free cricket from Willey and Rutherford, who kept the runs coming.
By dismissing Willey for an easy dismissal, Narine drew KKR back into the game.
Shahbaz Ahmed, who had been promoted to the top of the order, demonstrated his hitting skills by slamming two sixes against Russell to help RCB regain the upper hand.
In the final five overs, RCB needed 36 runs. After Shahbaz hit a maximum against Chakaravarthy, RCB reached 100 runs, but the right-handed hitter was stumped on the following delivery.
With 24 required from the final three overs, Tim Southee struck twice in the – to dismiss Rutherford and Wanindu Hasaranga, adding a new twist to the story.
In the penultimate over, Harshal Patel smashed two decisive fours before Dinesh Karthik finished the chase with a six and a four.
The Knight Riders, who were given the opportunity to bat first, made one change from their previous match: Tim Southee replaced Shivam Mavi in the side. The openers, Venkatesh Iyer and Ajinkya Rahane, got off to a cautious start, scoring 14 runs in the opening three overs.
In the fourth over, RCB took advantage of their strong start to dismiss Venkatesh Iyer, who was caught and bowled by Akash Deep.
Shreyas Iyer, the KKR captain who joined Rahane, started his bat with two fours. After right-handed batter Rahane was caught in the deep by Shahbaz Ahmed, who took an easy catch, Mohammed Siraj dismissed him.
Nitish Rana started his innings with a four and a six off Akash Deep, but the pacer came back to eliminate the left-handed hitter thanks to a wonderful running catch by David Willey, and KKR were 44-3 after six overs.
The Knight Riders’ woes worsened when captain Iyer was caught at long-on by du Plessis off Hasaranga’s bowling.
The two new batters in the middle were Sam Billings and Sunil Narine. Narine got off to a fast start, smashing a four and a six against Akash Deep. Following Narine, Billings hit a maximum over mid-wicket.
Hasaranga took two wickets in a row to send Narine and Sheldon Jackson back to the dressing room. In the ninth over, when Narine was caught within the circle, Jackson was bamboozled by the spinner.
With KKR floundering at 76/6 at the halfway mark, the dangerous Andre Russell went in to bat, and the right-handed batsman declared his arrival with a four and six each.
Harshal Patel got in on the action with a rare wicket-maiden over, taking out Sam Billings, who was caught in the deep by Virat Kohli. Russell, on the other hand, showed no signs of backing down, slamming two massive sixes against Shahbaz Ahmed.
Russell’s spectacular knock of 25 came to an end when he was caught behind off Harshal Patel, who bowled a superb wicket-maiden for the second time in a row.
Hasaranga’s fourth victim was Tim Southee, who was securely caught by du Plessis at long-on after a mistimed shot. Umesh Yadav and Varun Chakravarthy shared 27 runs for the final wicket before Yadav was dismissed in the penultimate over by Akash Deep. The Knight Riders finished with a total of 128 points.
Royal Challengers Bangalore defeated Kolkata Knight Riders 128 (Andre Russell 25, Umesh Yadav 18; Wanindu Hasaranga 4-20) by 3 wickets (Sherfane Rutherford 28, Shahbaz Ahmed 27; Tim Southee 3-20).
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