IPL 2019: Andre Russell mania in Virat Kohli's ring!
KKR's West Indian power-hitter Andre hammers 13-ball 48 not out, including seven huge sixes, as visitors hand hosts Royal Challengers Bangalore their fifth straight defeat
Whatever you can do, we can do better was the message sent out by Kolkata Knight Riders to Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Chinnswamy Stadium here last night. Set as many as 206 to get after RCB's old firm of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers got together in a rollicking 108-run second wicket association which consumed a mere 54 balls, KKR hit back first through their own second-wicket pair of opener Chris Lynn and Robin Uthappa before that man Andre Russell did what he does best — bludgeon the bowling. The visitors thus got home with five balls and five wickets to spare. KKR's third win from four games left RCB winless from five.
At one stage, RCB seemed to have pulled the game back their way thanks to twin strikes by Pawan Negi, playing his first game of the tournament. Getting the ball to turn and bounce the left-arm spinner got rid of the rampaging Lynn (43 off 31 balls, 4x4, 2x6) and Uthappa (33 off 25 balls, 5x4) off his first two. But then a change of ends saw some poor bowling and KKR were back on track though it still needed the power and brutality of Russell (48 not out off 13 balls, 1x4, 7x6) ) to complete the damage. The 18th over, sent down by Mohd Siraj and Marcus Stoinis (Siraj was stopped from bowling after his second beamer), cost RCB 23 runs, the 19th by Southee 29 and the match was over. When Russell walked in KKR required 67 in 26 balls. He used up a mere 13 to seal the issue.
Earlier, it was vintage Kohli from very the first ball even if it was not so with De Villiers, who took some time to find his groove. Two elegant stand-up cover drives off the first two deliveries he faced, off local boy Prasidh Krishna, who went on to concede 41 from three overs, set Kohli off. With Parthiv Patel playing his usual start-stop innings, the Powerplay, thanks to Kohli, produced a healthy 53, but the next five overs went KKR's way. First Patel (25 off 24 balls, 3x4) slowed things down and then De Villiers struggled to find the middle of his bat.
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