KKR’s challenging score due to Russell’s stormy innings

Pune, May 14 (PTI) Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) overcome setbacks from Umran Malik with Andre Russell’s blistering knock and his half-century partnership with Sam Billings in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match against Sunrisers Hyderabad here on Saturday. Made a challenging score of 177 runs for six wickets.

Umran took three wickets for 33 runs. Russell (49 off 28 balls, three fours, four sixes) and Billings (34 off 29 balls, three fours, one six) shared a 63-run stand for the sixth wicket.

Batting first after winning the toss, KKR scored only 20 runs in the first four overs and meanwhile lost the wicket of Venkatesh Iyer (7), who was bowled by Marco Yansen (1 for 30) but Nitish Rana (26 off 16 balls, 3 wickets). Sixes, one four) and Ajinkya Rahane (28 off 24 balls, three sixes) scored 35 runs in the next two overs to take the score to 55 in the powerplay.

Rana also sent Yansen’s delivery for six after hitting two sixes on comeback T Natarajan (1 for 43) after recovering from injury. Rahane also hit a six in this over of Yansen. He also welcomed Washington Sundar with a six but Umran created a ruckus in KKR’s camp as soon as he arrived.

Umran showed Rana and Rahane in their first over while skipper Shreyas Iyer (15) showed the way to the pavilion in the second over. It was costly to pull Rana off the short pitch ball and Rahane to make an upper cut and he could not stretch his innings. Shashank Singh took the catch of both of them. Rana and Rahane shared a 48-run partnership.

Natarajan bowled Rinku Singh (five) on an inswing yorker to reduce the score to 94 for five.

In such a situation, Russell converted Natarajan’s full toss into a thunderous six, then Billings hit two fours on Umran. Billings could not do much after this and was given an easy catch off the ball of Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1 for 27 runs). Russell hit three sixes in the last over of Washington’s innings.