KKR thrashed the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday by six wickets, and with Gujarat Lions winning their game the same night, the Bangalore side are headed to finish with the wooden spoon this IPL. This is a spectacular downfall for the Kohli-led side who had dominated last year, finishing runners-up after losing the final to the Sunrisers Hyderabad. Kolkata’s win was powered by spectacular half centuries from Sunil Narine who blasted a half century off 15 balls, the joint-fastest ever in the history of the IPL, while Chris Lynn slammed a 21-ball fifty. With this victory, Gautam Gambhir’s team have moved to second in the points table while Virat Kohli’s team end up with just one home win in the 2017 season.
Gayle fell for a golden duck in his 100th IPL match, undone by a back-of-a-length delivery from Umesh Yadav that stopped on him. Kohli slogged and was caught with his front foot before the wicket a ball after he was dropped. De Villiers was bowled sweeping a knuckle ball from Narine. His average against spin this season has been 13.75. It was left to Mandeep Singh (52 off 43 balls) and Travis Head (75 off 47 balls) to lay the foundation, play out the middle overs and slog in the death, as they helped RCB get to a respectable score of 158, which they did at the loss of six wickets. Umesh Yadav (3 wickets) and Sunil Narine (2 wickets) were the pick of the bowlers for the KKR side, although the RCB side were let off the hook despite a bad start, unlike the last time when the RCB were bowled out for 49.
Their bowling, however, was abysmal today with full tosses, length balls and wides dominating the show as the under-pressure side came for a hammering from one of the best batting orders in the tournament. It was a ‘hit’ day for Sunil Narine, who has been employed as a hit-and-miss pinch hitter at the top of the order. He raced to 50 in 15 balls, and very well extinguished all hopes of a fightback by the RCB bowling. He was helped along amply by Chris Lynn, back after a long injury break, and the pair put on a staggering 105 runs in the Powerplay overs, a record that bested CSK’s score in 2014. KKR raced to the target score by the 15th over, and with this win, they have restored both their place amongst the top two in the points tally, and their flagging confidence after unexpected losses to both Pune and Hyderabad. KKR now go into the playoffs as the red-hot team to watch out for, along with MI who have lost all of two games till now.
Next match for RCB : Delhi Daredevils at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Sunday May14 (Last game of the IPL)
Next game for KKR : Kings XI Punjab at PCA Stadium, Mohali, Tuesday May9 (second last game of league matches)