Raina and Gujarat Lions Pull off a Surprise at the Eden Gardens with Four-wicket Win

The 23rd match of IPL 2017 was a high-scoring thriller between Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Gujarat Lions (GL) at the Eden Gardens. Having been put into bat first after losing the toss, the hosts posted 187/5, which was at least 20 runs short of the total Kolkata were expected to reach. They were 116/2 at the end of 12 overs and needless to say, 71 runs off the last eight overs was an underwhelming return, particularly with their player of the season so far (Manish Pandey) in the middle.

Robin Uthappa top-scored for the Knight Riders with an authoritative 48-ball 72. Also, Sunil Narine, opening the batting for KKR for the third time this season, struck a 17-ball 42 (9×4 and 1×6). The West Indian spinner and now opening batsman for his IPL franchise, provided a breathtaking opening to the Kolkata innings.

The Lions’ bowlers have to be commended for recovering from the initial Narine onslaught. Contrary to what his bowling figures (1/44) might suggest, Basil Thampi produced another eye-catching performance with the ball.

Aaron Finch opened the innings for Gujarat Lions alongside Brendon McCullum, with Dwayne Smith dropping down to No. 6 in the batting order, below the young Ishan Kishan. The Finch-McCullum duo provided the ideal start to the 188-run chase. Gujarat scored 72 runs and lost just the wicket of Finch in the powerplay. From where, they should have, with their batting line-up, coasted home.

However, a significant lack of contributions from the Lions’ middle order and a slight rain interruption made this a massive proposition for Gujarat and Suresh Raina, in particular.

Raina, with the innings threatening to collapse, stepped up to the plate and played the knock—[84 (46); 9×4 and 4×6]—which proved to be a match-winning one. His innings was largely about picking a spot to hit the ball and timing the ball well. The UP batsman was in supreme rhythm on the night. Earlier in the night, he also bowled a crucial two-over spell of off-spin and removed Narine when the Trinidadian threatened to cause even more damage at the top of the order.

For Knight Riders, every bowler other than Kuldeep Yadav, had a night to forget. Gautam Gambhir’s men were, for the first time this season, beaten at the Eden Gardens.

Knight Riders vs Gujarat Lions, 23rd Match Scorecard

Playing XIs

KKR: 1. Gautam Gambhir (c), 2. Sunil Narine, 3. Robin Uthappa (wk), 4. Manish Pandey, 5. Yusuf Pathan, 6. Suryakumar Yadav, 7. Shakib Al Hasan, 8. Chris Woakes, 9. Kuldeep Yadav, 10. Nathan Coulter-Nile, and 11. Umesh Yadav

GL: 1. Suresh Raina (c), 2. Brendon McCullum, 3. Dwayne Smith, 4. Dinesh Karthik (wk), 5. Aaron Finch, 6. Ishan Kishan, 7. Ravindra Jadeja, 8. James Faulkner, 9. Dhawal Kulkarni, 10. Basil Thampi, and 11. Praveen Kumar

Scores

Knight Riders: 187/5 (Uthappa 72 and Narine 42; Raina 1/11)
Gujarat: 188/6 (Raina 84; Kuldeep 2/33)

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) Innings (toss: Gujarat, who chose to bowl first)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Sunil Narine caught Faulkner, bowled Raina 42 (17) 9 1 247.05
Gautam Gambhir caught Raina, bowled Faulkner 33 (28) 1 1 117.85
Robin Uthappa caught McCullum, bowled Praveen 72 (48) 8 2 150.00
Manish Pandey bowled Thampi 24 (21) 2 0 114.28
Yusuf Pathan not out 11 (4) 2 0 275.00
Suryakumar Yadav run out Karthik 1 (1) 0 0 100.00
Shakib Al Hasan not out 1 (1) 0 0 100.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Chris Woakes, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Kuldeep Yadav, and Umesh Yadav
Extras: 3 (1 wide and 2 leg byes)
KKR’s total: 187/5 in 20 overs, at 9.35 runs per over
KKR’s fall of wickets: 45/1 (Narine, 3.2), 114/2 (Gambhir, 11.3), 169/3 (Uthappa, 18.2), 184/4 (Pandey, 19.3), and 186/5 (Suryakumar, 19.5)
Gujarat Lions (GL) Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Praveen Kumar 2 4 24 1 12.00
James Faulkner 4 7 38 1 9.50
Basil Thampi 4 7 44 1 11.00
Suresh Raina 2 4 11 1 5.50
Dhawal Kulkarni 2 3 23 0 11.50
Ravindra Jadeja 4 5 31 0 7.75
Dwayne Smith 2 2 14 0 7.00
Gujarat Innings (target: 188 runs in 20 overs, at 9.40 runs per over)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Aaron Finch caught Pandey, bowled Coulter-Nile 31 (15) 4 2 206.66
Brendon McCullum caught Pandey, bowled Woakes 33 (17) 5 1 194.11
Suresh Raina caught Pandey, bowled Kuldeep 84 (46) 9 4 182.60
Dinesh Karthik caught Gambhir, bowled Coulter-Nile 3 (3) 0 0 100.00
Ishan Kishan caught Umesh, bowled Kuldeep 4 (11) 0 0 36.36
Dwayne Smith bowled Umesh 5 (4) 1 0 125.00
Ravindra Jadeja not out 19 (13) 1 1 146.15
James Faulkner not out 4 (2) 0 0 200.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Praveen Kumar, Basil Thampi and Dhawal Kulkarni
Extras: 5 (1 no-ball and 4 leg byes)
GL’s total: 188/6 in 18.2 overs, at 10.25 runs per over
GL’s fall of wickets: 42/1 (Finch, 3.3), 73/2 (McCullum, 6.2),  81/3 (Karthik, 7.2), 115/4 (Kishan, 11.4), 122/5 (D Smith, 12.4), and 180/6 (Raina, 17.5)
Kolkata Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Shakib Al Hasan 3 7 31 0 10.34
Sunil Narine 4 7 42 0 10.50
Nathan Coulter-Nile 3.2 6 41 2 12.30
Chris Woakes 2 3 20 1 10.00
Kuldeep Yadav 4 7 33 2 8.25
Umesh Yadav 2 3 17 1 8.50

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