When Kolkata Knight Riders took field at Abu Dhabi today against in-form Delhi Capitals, many had counted them out. KKR had struggled in their previous match against RCB but it was a different KKR today. They played a brand of cricket on which coach Brendon McCullum would be proud of.
Ever since KKR broke the bank for Australian pacer Pat Cummins, he has been at the center of scrutiny. He had bowled well before this match without getting much success in the wickets column. But he proved too hot to handle today for Delhi Capitals top order.
After getting Ajinkya Rahane LBW on the first ball of the innings, Pat Cummins accounted for Shikhar Dhawan in his second over. The delivery was angling in towards the left-hander and with Shikhar Dhawan’s natural instinct is to stay leg-side of the ball, little bit of deviation off the pitch would have been good enough for him. And that’s exactly what happened there with the ball disturbing the furniture of Shikhar Dhawan.
Delhi Capitals won the toss and elected to bowl first on a sunny afternoon in Abu Dhabi. KKR lost 3 wickets relatively early before Nitish Rana and Sunil Narine came together. Both had something to prove after their poor performances earlier in the season. Both went from strength to strength today and used their long handles perfectly. Spinners or fast bowlers, these two were hitting all of them into submission. An onslaught that worth 115 runs came in double-quick time for KKR as they piled on 194 runs on the board. Nitish Rana and Sunil Narine slammed 81 & 64 runs respectively.
In reply, Pat Cummins jolted DC by dismissing both their openers very early. Then came Varun Chakravarthy show as he bowled a spell of his lifetime. He picked up 5-20 from his 4 overs as DC never really threatened the target. Delhi only managed 135 runs from their 20 overs as KKR registered two crucial points and boosted their net run rate.