After missing out on the playoffs for the last two campaigns, KKR are on a mission to make it into the final four this time. If early signs are any indication, the side means total business after a convincing outing that ticked all the boxes. SRH were always on the back foot right from the start and as a result, suffered a 10-run loss against the two-time champions.
Electing to bat first after winning the toss, David Warner revealed the overseas players to be Jonny Bairstow, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan and himself. The only other overseas captain, Eoin Morgan, played Pat Cummins, Andre Russell and Shakib Al Hasan as the overseas players apart from himself.
KKR stuck with the opening partnership that was tried out during the latter stage of the 2020 IPL. Shubman Gill and Nitish Rana, escaped unscathed in the powerplay, something which the side were unable to accomplish in the previous edition.
The introduction of Rashid Khan delivered a wicket for SRH right after the powerplay Going for a wild swing off the final delivery of the over, Gill was punished as he missed the ball altogether.
Rana was joined by Rahul Tripathi in the middle and the duo proceeded to take the game away from the opposition in the middle overs. Rashid Khan failed to garner any support from the rest of the bowling attack. The 93-run stand for the second wicket was brought to an end in the 16th over with the dismissal of Rahul Tripathi.
While there was a slump in the death overs following the wickets of Rana, Russell and Morgan, former captain’s feisty little cameo made for it as KKR cruised to a mammoth total of 187-6. The pacers had an evening to forget as they conceded 131 runs in their 12 overs with only a solitary wicket in return.
After executing a near-perfect powerplay with the bat, KKR went on to do the same with the ball as well. Both the openers were inside the pavilion by the third over courtesy of some good bowling with the new ball.
Fifties from Manish Pandey and Jonny Bairstow stabilised the innings in the middle overs, However, the constant increase of the required rate caught up with SRH and naturally, the wickets flowed.
Abdul Samad’s strikes were too late in the contest while Pandey remained unbeaten till the end as SRH fell short by 10 runs in their opening encounter.
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