Chennai Super Kings defeated Kolkata Knight Riders by six wickets in the IPL with Ruturaj Gaikwad playing the match-winning knock. Ravindra Jadeja hit Kamlesh Nagarkoti for a huge six off the last ball of the match to secure a thrilling win for his side.
Batting first, Kolkata Knight Riders put up a total of 172-5 in 20 overs with Nitish Rana scoring 87 in 61 balls. His knock included four sixes and 10 fours.
As for Chennai Super Kings, Lungi Ngidi picked up two wickets by conceding 34 runs.
The run-chase by Chennai Super Kings began on an aggressive note. They did not let the departure of Shane Watson dampen their spirit as Ruturaj Gaikwad continued to lead the charge. Ambati Rayudu made quickfire 38 in 20 balls but he could not last long. Just when everyone thought that Gaikwad was set to guide the CSK to a consolation victory, he departed off the bowling of Pat Cummins, trying to play an adventurous shot. He made 72 in 52 balls.
However, thanks to awful bowling by Lockie Furgeson that the KKR gifted a match that they were set to win. Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s side needed more than 30 plus runs in the last two overs. But Ferguson’s wayward bowling resulted in the CSK earning a free-hit, which was converted into a huge six by Ravindra Jadeja, bringing the target to just 10 in the last over.
Both Varun Chakravarthy and Pat Cummins shared two wickets each. With today’s defeat, Kolkata Knight Riders continue to languish at fifth in the points table with 12 points after 13 matches. With 8 points in 13 matches, Chennai Super Kings have officially been knocked out of the competition despiting their win against the KKR.
Reacting to his side’s shock win, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan said after the match, “We probably played a bit well there. Probably on the wrong side of the loss with the toss. Our bowlers gave it everything, but the skills were a bit off. We’ll have to move on quickly. I think the score was enough. We felt we were right in the game. Probably 165 was par if the wicket and conditions stayed the same. I actually think we had a good batting day. One world class spinner, and the other on the cusp of playing for India. They’re fantastic spinners. I can’t fault any bowlers. Nagarkoti probably didn’t have enough runs to defend, would have liked 16-17. He’s a young guy, he’ll take it on the chin and move on.”
Dhoni said, “I think it was one game where the plans went in our favour. Needed a lot of effort from the players. Really glad the coin fell in our favour. This season Jadeja has been fantastic. He’s been the only batsman in our team who has taken the job of scoring in the last few overs. Not just using his power but through point if the field is up. I feel throughout the season we needed someone by his side. The changes are a conscious effort. We want to give games to people who haven’t played and we need them to grab those opportunities. Ruturaj we’d seen him in the nets, but then he got Covid positive and took 20 days. Unfortunate but he’ll remember this season. He’s one of the most talented players going around. What makes it difficult is he’s not somebody who speaks a lot! So sometimes it becomes difficult for the management to gauge a player. Once he started going in the innings, you could see that he was hitting the ball the way he wants to and he was planning. When we made him play the first game, he got out, stepped out. It becomes difficult to tell whether it was the pressure that made him step out or whether that’s his natural game. One ball isn’t enough. We haven’t performed in the tournament but we felt it’s important to be relevant in the tournament. That’s what we kept requesting the guys. We said you prepare how you want to, but 3-3.5 hours give your best. We are not in the position to qualify and there’s plenty of takeaways and at the same time it gives a glimpse.”
Gaikwad was adjudged Man Of The Match for his superb innings.