IPL 2019: Steve Smith's half century in vain as Kolkata slay Rajasthan
After Rahane's early dismissal, Buttler hit a couple of fours in the fourth over bowled by Krishna and after that runs were hard to come by before one-down Smith hit another couple of boundaries in the ninth over off chinaman Kuldeep Yadav
Kolkata Knight Riders registered yet another comfortable win in IPL-12 and this time they didn't even need the big-hitting of Andre Russell. Openers Sunil Narine (47 off 25, 6x4, 3x6) and Chris Lynn (50 off 32 balls, 6x4, 2x6) gave KKR the perfect start at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium as they chased down Rajasthan Royals' 139-3 with eight wickets and 37 balls to spare.
The win overshadowed Australian Steve Smith's unbeaten half century after the Royals were put in to bat. Smith struck his first half century of this IPL season as he remained not out on 73 off 59 deliveries. The former Australia captain, who returned to competitive cricket last month after serving a one-year ban for his involvement in the infamous ball-tampering scandal in South Africa, hit seven fours and one six in his unbeaten knock.
He shared 72 runs in 10.4 overs with opener Jos Buttler (37 off 34 balls) for the second wicket after captain Ajinkya Rahane was out cheaply for 5 in the second over. Rahane was trapped LBW by Prasidh Krishna. On a slow track, the runs were a premium as the ball did not come on to the bat easily. The stadium was also engulfed by a sandstorm before the tie but the match started on time.
The home side were 56 for 1 in the first 10 overs but increased the scoring rate at the back end, adding 83 runs thereafter with Smith scoring the bulk of the runs. After Rahane's early dismissal, Buttler hit a couple of fours in the fourth over bowled by Krishna and after that runs were hard to come by before one-down Smith hit another couple of boundaries in the ninth over off chinaman Kuldeep Yadav.
Buttler hit the first six of the match in the fourth delivery of the 12th over bowled by debutant pacer Harry Gurney (2-25) but was out the next ball while going for another big shot with Subhman Gill taking a fine catch near the ropes. Smith reached his 50 off 44 deliveries in the 15th over and then opened up his arms in search of runs.
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