Mitchell Starc’s three-fer, Phil Salt’s 89 not out propel KKR’s thrashing of LSG

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | April 14, 2024 IST

Mitchell Starc

Kolkata, April 14: Mitchell Starc picked a brilliant three-fer while Phil Salt smashed an incredible 89 not out as Kolkata Knight Riders thrashed Lucknow Super Giants by eight wickets at the Eden Gardens on Sunday.

Starc was the pick of KKR bowlers with his spell of 3/28, his best figures of the ongoing season. An impressive Sunil Narine, Vaibhav Arora, Varun Chakravarthy and Andre Russell also bagged a wicket each to keep LSG to a below-par 161/7.

In the chase, Salt blazed away from the power-play to hit 14 fours and three sixes in his 47-ball unbeaten 89 to complete KKR’s chase with 26 balls to spare, also giving the side their first-ever win over LSG in the IPL.

He was also supported by captain Shreyas Iyer making run-a-ball 38 not out as the duo shared a match-winning 120-run stand off 76 balls for the third wicket. The comprehensive victory coming on the Bengali New Year day in front of their faithful supporters means KKR maintain their second place in the points table by moving to eight points.

For LSG, where they looked out of sorts, including conceding 22 extras, they had to contend with Nicholas Pooran’s late burst of 45 off 32 balls and a returning Mohsin Khan picking 2-29 in his four overs being the positives for them.

Chasing 162, West Indies fast-bowling sensation Shamar Joseph leaked 22 runs in the opening over. While Narine and Salt hit him for four and six respectively, Joseph bowled a lot of extras, including six wides and two no-balls. Narine didn’t last long as he miscued a slice off a slower ball from Mohsin Khan to be caught at point.

Salt was nonchalant and ruthless at the same time in smashing Krunal Pandya for a hat-trick of boundaries in the third over to give KKR some momentum, even as Mohsin came back to force Angkrish Raghuvanshi in playing at an angled across delivery, which he could only nick behind.

Mohsin and Joseph caused problems for Shreyas, even as Salt kept going with his attacking tempo by flaying Yash Thakur for two off-side boundaries as KKR closed the power-play at 58/2. After that, Iyer survived a caught-behind decision against Joseph on review, before Salt played a nice pick-up shot going for six, as deep square leg dropped the tough chance.

After Salt got a lucky four via an inside edge off Arshad Khan, Shreyas began to find some momentum by smashing him for two fours, apart from pulling Ravi Bishnoi for another boundary. Salt took another four off Arshad via an inside edge and reached his fifty in 26 balls by flaying a short ball off him through backward point for a boundary yet again.

Despite some mix-ups between Salt and Shreyas, KKR remained in control as the former fiercely pulled Mohsin for four, followed by the latter pulling and cutting off Mohsin for a brace of boundaries. Salt made full use of Thakur’s wayward bowling by hitting three fours, before walloping Mohsin for a four and six respectively.

He finished off the chase in style by pulling Bishnoi for four to seal a comprehensive win for KKR in starting their stretch of five consecutive matches at home, while handing LSG their second consecutive defeat in the tournament. Previously, LSG stumbled a lot and never gave the feeling of momentum being firmly in their hands, as Starc, Narine and Chakaravarthy didn’t let them break free.

It took Pooran’s 45 off 32 balls, laced with two fours and four sixes, to take LSG past 160. After making 21 runs in his first 21 balls, Pooran collected 24 runs off his next 11 balls to lend some respectability to the visitors’ total.

Pushed into batting first, Quinton de Kock got going with back-to-back driven fours off Starc. Arora began the second over with a wide and no ball, before being lofted for six by KL Rahul. But the pacer bounced back by angling the delivery away from de Kock, whose drive on the up was caught by short third man.

Rahul then smashed Starc for fours via pull and drive, even as Deepak Hooda was being troubled by away-going balls and fended a bouncer awkwardly from the fast-bowler. Starc finally took him out in his third over of power-play by forcing Hooda to go hard at a wide delivery, and Ramandeep Singh dived full length to take a stunning catch at backward point.

Rahul and Ayush Badoni took a four each off Harshit Rana in the last over of power-play as LSG ended the six-over phase with 42/2. After that KKR kept things tight to force a slowdown till Badoni picked a four off Chakravarthy, while Rahul upper-cut Russell for six.

But KKR bounced back as Rahul pulled straight to deep mid-wicket off Russell. Marcus Stoinis pulled him for a brace of fours, but didn’t last long as he inside-edged to his pads off Chakravarthy and Salt took an excellent one-handed catch. Badoni perished in a bid to go big against Narine, top-edging a sweep to deep backward square leg.

Pooran began his onslaught by heaving Harshit for six, before pulling twice off Arora for a brace of maximums in the 18th over. He had luck on his side in the 19th over when top-edge flew over short third man for four, while another top-edge beat diving square leg to fetch him two fours.

But Starc ensured there were no more fireworks from Pooran in the final over by having him caught behind while trying to hit off a wide delivery. Impact player Arshad Khan hit a four, before his stumps were left in an almighty mess by Starc, who conceded just six runs in the final over.

Brief Scores: Lucknow Super Giants 161/7 in 20 overs (Nicholas Pooran 45, KL Rahul; Mitchell Starc 3-28, Andre Russell 1-16) lost to Kolkata Knight Riders 162/2 in 15.4 overs (Phil Salt 89 not out, Shreyas Iyer 38 not out; Mohsin Khan 2-29) by eight wickets

 (IANS) 

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