Rajasthan Royals Makes It Second Win in a Row

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The match between Shah Rukh Khan’s owned Kolkata knight Riders and Shilpa Shetti’s Rajasthan Royals ended with a win for Rajasthan. The toss was won by Kolkata Knight Riders who elected to field. The decision was right as the Rajasthan batsmen struggled initially. Looking at the condition of the pitch, KKR had replaced Laxmipathy Balaji with Shami Ahmed, keeping the only spinner Sunil Narine in the squad. Regular fall of wickets kept the run rate low for Rajasthan Royals.

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Opening batsman Shane Watson failed to perform again in the subcontinent pitches. Later, Rahul Dravid and Stuart Binny also fell early. Royals had scored only 114 runs in 18 overs for the loss of 5 wickets, courtesy to Ajinkya Rahane. With Brad Hodge and Dishant Yagnik on the crease, the final two overs provided a jack for the batting side as Rajasthan propelled to 144 runs, scoring 30 runs. In the penultimate over, the batsmen punished Narine who got 18 runs, proving the most expensive over bowled by him in the IPL. In the final over, the batsmen scored 12 runs with Brad Hodge staying not out on 46 runs. The total given to KKR looked a decent and defendable one.

Rajasthan Royal had omitted all the spinners after seeing the pitch condition as it was a bouncy and fast wicket. The bowlers justified their team selection as all the five pacers took at least one wicket. They bowled perfect line and length to restrict KKR batsmen’s scoring abilities. Although the start was good for KKR as they scored 14 runs in the first over bowled by Sreesanth. However, two quick fall of wickets in the third over by Shukla did the damage as Bisla was bowled while Jacques Kallis was caught behind. Later, in the seventh over, Trivedi removed Manoj Tiwary by getting him lbw on the first ball. Later, on the fifth delivery, he dismissed skipper Gautam Gambhir who was caught behind. The team’s total at that time was 43 runs for the loss of 4 wickets. With Yusuf Pathan back to pavilion, it was only Eoin Morgan who was the established batsman as a ray of hope for KKR.

Morgan started to build small partnerships with the batsmen. He played precise and as a result, KKR’s run rate was under control. However, wickets kept falling from the other end. In the last two overs, Knight Riders required 23 runs with 2 wickets remaining. However, on the very first delivery, Cooper removed. Morgan and the job was over for Royals. With 1 wicket remaining, Shukla also removed Manvinder in the same over. Royals won the contest by 19 runs, registering second consecutive win in the season’s IPL. Siddharth Trivedi took 3 wickets for 23 runs and was declared Man of the Match. The score board is as follows:

Rajasthan Royals 144 for 6 (Hodge 46*, Narine 2-28) beat Kolkata Knight Riders 125 (Morgan 51, Trivedi 3-23, Cooper 3-15) by 19 runs.

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