Opener sets the chase up with 72 before all-rounder smashes sixes off the last two balls to take CSK past the finish line; Rana’s 87 not enough for Morgan’s side
With nine balls left and 27 to defend, Kolkata Knight Riders would have fancied its chances. But Ravindra Jadeja produced some mighty hits in an unbeaten 31 off just 11 balls (2×4, 3×6) to help Chennai Super Kings win by six wickets at the Dubai International Stadium on Thursday.
The momentum shift
Lockie Ferguson lost control of proceedings during the final three legal deliveries of the 19th over against Jadeja, conceding 17 runs, including a no-ball and a free-hit six, leaving CSK needing only 10 runs off the final over.
Despite Kamlesh Nagarkoti’s best efforts in changing the equation to seven off the last two balls, Jadeja’s experience ensured he sent them over the deep mid-wicket and wide long-on fence to seal the match.
The defeat leaves KKR’s playoff chances in jeopardy. It also confirms Mumbai Indians’ place in the last four.
Chasing 173 for victory, Gaikwad set it up for CSK with a classy 72 off 53 balls (6×4, 2×6). The youngster played some exquisite shots against the likes of Ferguson and Pat Cummins. Gaikwad was particularly severe on Ferguson, pulling and lifting him over the in-field with courage and conviction. Ambati Rayudu gave the innings tempo with a 20-ball 38 (5×4, 1×6), as he added 68 for the second wicket with Gaikwad in just 6.1 overs. Varun Chakravarthy bowled a fine spell (4-0-20-2) for KKR.
Earlier, KKR made 172 for five after being put in, thanks to Nitish Rana’s scintillating 87 off 61 balls (10×4, 4×6).
Shubman Gill and Rana provided KKR with a solid start, putting on 53 runs for the opening wicket.
Rana, after a cautious start, cut loose against Mitchell Santner in the sixth over, sweeping the left-arm spinner for two boundaries and following it up with a six over mid-wicket.
CSK fought back in the next few overs through its spinners Santner, Karn Sharma and Jadeja. However, Rana then went after Karn in the 16th over, hitting the leggie for three consecutive sixes on the leg-side to give KKR the final push.
The southpaw seemed on course for a big hundred before he was deceived by a slower one from Lungi Ngidi.
Dinesh Karthik helped KKR finish strongly as he came up with a 10-ball 21 that contained three boundaries. However, Gaikwad and Jadeja ensured that CSK had the last laugh.
MI enters playoffs
KKR’s loss against CSK meant that MI became the first team to qualify for the playoffs
Rayudu plays a crucial role in CSK’s chase against KKR, hammering a 20-ball 38
Varun turns in another fine performance for the Kolkata side, but his effort goes in vain
KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS
Shubman Gill b Karn 26 (17b, 4×4), Nitish Rana c Sam Curran b Ngidi 87 (61b, 10×4, 4×6), Sunil Narine c Jadeja b Santner 7 (7b, 1×6), Rinku Singh c Rayudu b Jadeja 11 (11b, 1×4), Eoin Morgan c Ruturaj b Ngidi 15 (12b, 2×4), Dinesh Karthik (not out) 21 (10b, 3×4), Rahul Tripathi (not out) 3 (2b); Extras (lb-1, w-1): 2; Total (for five wkts. in 20 overs): 172.
FALL OF WICKETS
1-53 (Gill, 7.2 overs), 2-60 (Narine, 8.3), 3-93 (Rinku,12.5), 4-137 (Rana, 17.1), 5-167 (Morgan, 19.2).
SUPER KINGS BOWLING
Deepak Chahar 3-0-31-0, Sam Curran 3-0-21-0, Ngidi 4-0-34-2, Santner 3-0-30-1, Jadeja 3-0-20-1, Karn 4-0-35-1.