IPL 2018: Nitish Rana's twin strike, Sunil Narine's blitz demolish RCB

Apr 09, 2018, 01:48
IPL 2018: Nitish Rana's twin strike, Sunil Narine's blitz demolish RCB

Toss: Dinesh Karthik won the toss and Kolkata Knight Riders chose to field first against Royal Challengers Bangalore at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday (April 8) in the second match of the first double-header of Indian Premier League 2018. In KKR, Gautam Gambhir era has expired, and now the captaincy is on Dinesh Karthik.

Sunil Narine scored yet another quickfire fifty to put Kolkata Knight Riders on a winning path but it was Nitish Rana, who played a key role with ball as well as bat to outplay Royal Challengers Bangalore by four wickets at the Eden Gardens on Sunday. In his company was the ever-dangerous Virat Kohli.

At least Virat Kohli is fit to start the competition: The skipper and his side never really recovered from his absence at the beginning of the 2017 campaign and he will need to come close to his IPL 9 form where he took the Orange Cap with 973 runs. Sunil Narine, who opened the innings, smashed quick-fire 50 off 19 balls to set the tone for win. On the other side, Bangalore's top four include McCullum, Kohli, De Kock, and De Villiers. In his innings of 44 from 23 balls, he struck a whopping five sixes to go with a four.

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Despite losing their first game of IPL 2018, Kohli was keen to look for the positives, adding: 'We made a pretty good game out of it which was a positive. Two wickets also fell in that over. In all, RCB extracted 52 off the Powerplay for the loss of Quinton de Kock, and McCullum looked for the boundary at every opportunity before his dismissal for 43 in the ninth over. Brendon McCullum, 3. Virat Kohli (c), 4. Rana then yorked Kohli (31, 33b, 1x4, 1x6) to peg back RCB.

I've chose to ignore AB de Villiers for this match.

Virat Kohli has taken regular breaks over the past few months to keep himself operating at optimum level and the Bangalore captain said he has nearly reached that level at the start of this edition of the IPL.

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Kolkata are without fast bowler Mitchell Starc but have decent cover in the pace bowling department.

Narine's blitzkrieg allowed middle-oder batsman Nitish Rana to play boldly as he produced a crucial 34 off 25 balls. De Villiers mistimed Rana and Mitchell Johnson took the catch between long on and deep mid wicket.

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