IPL 2021, MI vs KKR: Venkatesh and Tripathi show allows Kolkata to overpower Mumbai by 7 wickets
Kolkata Knight Riders gave a tough time to Mumbai Indians in Match 34 at Abu Dhabi. The latter managed to tame the defending champion by seven wickets, thus taking itself to the fourth spot.
It was a unique all-round display from former champion Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) against defending champion Mumbai Indians (MI) in Match 34 of the 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Thursday. Venkatesh Iyer (53) and Rahul Tripathi (74*) played blistering twin innings to push MI onto the backfoot and register a clean seven-wicket win to take KKR to the fourth spot.
Winning the toss, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan opted to field first. While it moved in with an unchanged squad, MI made a change, bringing in skipper Rohit Sharma.
The MI openers, Rohit and Quinton de Kock were off to a commanding start, contributing to a 78-run opening stand before the former fell for 33 to mystery spinner Sunil Narine in the tenth over. It was thereon that MI lacked some promising partnerships, as just 11 runs later, Suryakumar Yadav departed for a mere five to pacer Prasidh Krishna in the 13th over.
Although de Kock brought up his 16th IPL half-century, he was dismissed for 55 by Krishna at 106 in the 15th over, while 13 runs later, wicketkeeper-batsman Ishan Kishan departed for just 14 to pacer Lockie Ferguson in the 17th. Nevertheless, the pair of Kieron Pollard and Krunal Pandya put up 30 more before the former was run-out for 21 in the final over.
The following delivery saw Krunal depart for 12 to the same man, as MI managed to finish at 155/6. While KKR used six bowlers, with Ferguson and Krishan earning the most success, Narine and Nitish Rana were the most economical.
As KKR came out for the chase, the openers were on fire right from the start. With Shubman Gill and Iyer contributing to a 40-run opening stand within the third over, the former was cleaned up for 13 by pacer Jasprit Bumrah.
However, it hardly made a difference, as Venkatesh and Tripathi contributed to an 88-run stand for the second wicket, which just took the game away from MI. Although MI did get some close chances, luck favoured the men in purple.
At 128, Venkatesh departed for 53 after scoring his maiden IPL half-century, as Bumrah was the man again to knock him over in the 12th over. However, it seemed too late, as Tripathi and Morgan continued to steer the innings and inch closer to the target before the latter fell for seven to the same man in the 15th.
Nonetheless, Tripathi and Nitish Rana finished it within the 16th over, as KKR registered a sensational seven-wicket triumph. As a result of this win, KKR has climbed to fourth, above MI, while the two successive wins by a considerable margin have also bettered its net run rate.
MI put six bowlers into the attack. While Bumrah was the only man to attain success to no avail, Krunal turned out to be the most economical.
Brief scores: MI 155/6 (Rohit-33, De Kock- 55; Ferguson- 2/27) lost to KKR 159/3 in 15.1 overs (Venkatesh- 53; Tripathi- 74) by seven wickets.
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