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Salt adds 'taste' to KKR victory

Updated on: 15 April,2024 08:23 AM IST  |  Kolkata
Arup Chatterjee |

Opener Phil smashes unbeaten 89 off 47 balls as hosts thrash LSG by eight wickets with 26 balls to spare; Kolkata’s Starc (3-28) and Narine (1-17) shine with ball

Salt adds 'taste' to KKR victory

Pacer Mitchell Starc (second from right) celebrates with his KKR teammates after dismissing LSG’s Deepak Hooda yesterday; (Right) KKR’s Phil Salt in full flow against LSG at Eden Gardens yesterday. Pics/AFP

Lucknow Super Giants’s (LSG) reputation of defending low totals in IPL-17 lay in tatters at the Eden Gardens on Sunday as the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) romped past LSG’s 161-7 with eight wickets and 26 deliveries to spare. It was KKR’s first victory in four matches over their nemesis and the Knights will be happy to get back on track after the blip in Chennai earlier this week.

Opener Phil Salt and skipper Shreyas Iyer added 120 in 76 balls for the third wicket to take KKR home. Salt’s unbeaten knock of 89 came off 47 balls with 14 boundaries and three sixes, while Shreyas was not out on 38 at run-a-ball with six boundaries.  

Quiet Powerplay

The LSG innings never quite took off. Quinton de Kock sent the first couple of deliveries for boundaries off Mitchell Starc, but the South African southpaw fell in the very next over, and it was mostly a struggle after that. While skipper KL Rahul hung around for a 27-ball 39 with three fours and a couple of sixes, the early loss of new man Deepak Hooda, brilliantly caught by Ramandeep Singh at point off Starc in the fifth over, meant that the Powerplay didn’t quite provide the launch-pad LSG would have hoped for. The entry of Nicholas Pooran, the six-hitting machine of the IPL, did create a flutter, but his 32-ball 45 with two fours and four sixes was too little too late.

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All but Harshit Rana were among the wickets, with Sunil Narine returning miserly figures of 4-0-17-1, but, perhaps more significantly, Starc, who finished with three for 28, looked to be finally getting into a groove.

‘Took long to get into rhythm’

How did the IPL’s costliest player handle the noise as he struggled in the previous matches? “I don’t read anything, so that doesn’t bother me,” Starc shot back, though he said, “It’s probably taken a bit longer to get into a rhythm than I thought.”  

When KKR began their reply, Shamar Joseph made a nervous IPL debut as the first over fetched a whopping 22 runs. The 24-year-old pacer from Guyana came apart after over-stepping on his final delivery, bowling three wide balls. When he finally delivered the legal free-hit ball, Salt hit him for a six. Mohsin Khan helped pull things back with a couple of crucial wickets, Narine skying one in the second over and Raghuvanshi nicking one in the fourth.

Salt and Shreyas took over from there.

Brief scores
LSG 161-7 in 20 overs (N Pooran 45, KL Rahul 39; M Starc 3-28) lost to KKR 162-2 in 15.4 overs (P Salt 89*, S Iyer 38*; M Khan 2-29) by 8 wickets

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