Knight Riders spinners fight back to earn win over Mumbai Indians

cricket11 May 2024 19:35| ยฉ MWP
By:Ross Roche

The Kolkata Knight Riders spinners fought back to lead them to a comfortable 18-run win over the Mumbai Indians in their weather delayed Tata Indian Premier League clash at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Saturday night.


The win saw the Knight Riders become the first team to book their spot in the playoffs.

Late afternoon and early evening rain saw the start of the match delayed by almost two hours, before it was reduced to a 16-over-a-side battle, with the hosts batting first and setting the visitors 158 to win.

The Mumbai chase got off to a great start as they looked on course for a win, before spinners Varun Chakaravarthy, 2-17, and Sunil Narine, 1-21, stopped them in their tracks, while Andre Russell, 2-34, and Harshit Rana, 2-34, picked up some important late wickets.

Ishan Kishan, 40 off 22 balls (5x4, 2x6), and Tilak Varma, 32 off 17 (5x4, 1x6), produced fireworks at the start and end of the innings, but it wasn't enough as Mumbai could only respond with 139/8.

The Mumbai chase got off to a flying start as Kishan tucked into the fast bowlers while sharing in a 65-run opening-wicket partnership with Rohit Sharma (19).

That included 14 coming off Vaibhav Arora in the third over, 15 off Rana in the fourth and 13 off Narine in the fifth as they reached the end of the five-over powerplay in a strong position on 59/0.

Narine then made the breakthrough in the seventh over as he had Kishan caught at midwicket, while Sharma's struggle came to an end in the next as he top edged Chakaravarthy to Narine at short fine leg as they slipped to 67/2 in the eighth over.

The wickets continued to tumble as Russell had Suryakumar Yadav (11) caught by Ramandeep Singh at deep midwicket, Chakaravarthy had Hardik Pandya (3) top edging to Arora at short third man, while Tim David hit Russell straight to Shreyas Iyer at deep midwicket as they fell to 92/5 at the start of 13th over.

With the run rate spiralling Varma valiantly tried to keep Mumbai in the hunt with his swashbuckling innings, but he received no support as Nehal Wadhera (3) was run out and Naman Dhir (17) and Varma both fell in Rana's final over as they fell well short in the end.


At the start of play the visitors won the toss and chose to bowl, with the hosts making their way to 157/7 at the end of their allotment, thanks to a few decent cameos, although none were able to kick on.

Venkatesh Iyer was the top scorer, crunching 42 off 21 balls, striking six fours and two sixes, while Nitish Rana, 33 off 23 (4x4, 1x6), and Russell, 24 off 14 (2x4, 2x6), also made positive contributions.

The Knight Riders' innings got off to a poor start as opener Phil Salt (6) skied Nuwan Thushara to Anshul Kamboj at fine leg, and the in-form Narine left an in-swinging yorker from Jasprit Bumrah to be bowled first ball, leaving them on 10/2 at the start of the second over.

Venkatesh and Shreyas Iyer (7) then combined to add 30 to the score in the next three overs, before Shreyas left his leg stump exposed, allowing Kamboj to clip the top of leg stump to send him on his way as they slipped to 40/3.

Venkatesh, despite suffering what looked to be a hamstring injury completing a run, continued his assault as he took his side past the 50 run mark in the sixth over, but at the start of the ninth he came down the wicket and hit Piyush Chawla straight to Yadav at long-off with the score 77/4.

This brought Russell in to join Rana and they set about a positive 39-run stand to try and get their side into a good position to produce a strong finish from.

However, after taking them past the hundred run mark in the 11th over and just as they looked to be taking charge, both fell in quick succession as Rana was punished for some lazy running, run out by Varma, while Russsell pulled Chawla straight to Kamboj at deep midwicket as they fell to 125/6 after 13 overs.

Rinku Singh, 20 off 12 (2x6), and Ramandeep Singh (17*) hit a few lusty blows in the closing overs as they shared in a 32-run seventh wicket stand, while Rinku fell in the last over, edging Bumrah to keeper Kishan.

KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS: Phil Salt (wk), Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Shreyas Iyer (capt), Venkatesh Iyer, Rinku Singh, Andre Russell, Ramandeep Singh, Mitchell Starc, Varun Chakaravarthy, Harshit Rana

MUMBAI INDIANS: Ishan Kishan (wk), Naman Dhir, Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Hardik Pandya (capt), Nehal Wadhera, Tim David, Anshul Kamboj, Piyush Chawla, Jasprit Bumrah, Nuwan Thushara