Kolkata Knight Riders pulled off a rippling display against Delhi Capitals as they secured a hard-fought victory on a difficult surface at Sharjah to remain in the fourth position on the points table. Kolkata’s newfound momentum has been based on a couple of new additions to the squad in Venkatesh Iyer and Lockie Ferguson, alongside the renewed excellence from Sunil Narine.
Iyer has been an absolute revelation, and the youngster from Madhya Pradesh has packed solid clout so far in the tournament. He started with a rippling 41 from 27 balls against Bangalore that was followed by an excellent 53 from just 30 balls.
The following two matches didn’t really see him breathe fire with the bat, but after a decent over against Chennai Super Kings, Morgan used him handsomely against Delhi Capitals to plug the gap of Andre Russell’s absence and also an injured Lockie Ferguson in the death overs.
Venkatesh Iyer found new footing with the ball
Much to the surprise of the fans, Iyer pulled off decent figures against Delhi as he chronicled numbers of 4-0-29-2. He claimed the dynamic scalps of Shimron Hetmyer and Axar Patel before the duo could flap their wings.
Though he couldn’t pull off something as majestic as his preceding showdowns with the willow, he made up for it with his bowling. As a matter of fact, T20 cricket has always been extremely welcoming to versatility and utility, considering the shorter format of the game.
On a video posted on IPLT20.com, Iyer was seen talking to his teammate, Nitish Rana, as he said that he wanted to focus on bowling the six balls perfectly once he was handed over the onus of bowling by Morgan.
He also mentioned that his focus was to get the boundaries shut as he was up against an explosive Hetmyer and Rishabh Pant, both of whom are capable of inflicting severe damage upon the bowlers.
This is what Rana had to say about Narine
Rana also added a valuable point as he said that Sunil Narine came in and said that KKR is just two to three big hits away from the finishing line and he was going to do the exact same. The Caribbean spinner took out Kagiso Rabada for a few titanic strikes that helped Kolkata plug back the leak that was opened up by the dismissal of Dinesh Karthik.
It was a sustained knock from Nitish Rana that sailed Kolkata through to the finishing line after a decent start from Shubman Gill and a late blitzkrieg from Sunil Narine. The West Indian spinner was awarded the man of the match award for his magical spell with the ball and destructive knock with the bat.