Bengaluru: An aggressive 56 from Jason Roy and a quick 48 from captain Nitish Rana propelled Kolkata Knight Riders to 200/5 against Royal Challengers Bangalore in an IPL 2023 match at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, here on Wednesday.
Apart from the duo, Rinku Singh and David Wiese hit 18 and 12 not out respectively in an innings where Kolkata shined in power-play, slowed in middle-overs and got a finishing kick in the death overs, which fetched them 69 runs.
For Bangalore, Wanindu Hasaranga and Vyshak Vijaykumar were superb in picking two wickets each while Mohammed Siraj took a wicket and got back the purple cap.
Before Wednesday’s match, Kolkata’s first wicket numbers made for a very grim read: 86 runs from seven matches. But Roy flipped the script with his free-flowing strokeplay as Kolkata’s first-wicket stand was worth 83 runs in 9.2 overs.
Roy was driving and smashing Siraj for three fours, before delightfully hitting a well-picked six off David Willey. On the other end, N Jagadeesan was trying his best to match up to Roy, cutting and driving twice off Willey for boundaries.
Roy’s blitzkrieg hit its high point when he smacked four sixes in the sixth over bowled by Shahbaz Ahmed, going for 25 runs, with the right-hander bringing up his fifty in 25 balls.
Jagadeesan struggled to match up Roy’s pace and Vyshak Vijaykumar put an end to his innings in the tenth over when the right-handed batter didn’t get enough elevation on a pull, holing out to deep mid-wicket.
Four balls later, the vociferous crowd roared again in the pacer’s favour as he cleaned up Roy with a top-class yorker angled on leg-stump, with Bangalore giving away 27 runs from overs 7-11, conceding just one boundary.
Rana and Venkatesh Iyer hit boundaries off Hasaranga, Vyshak and Willey whenever they pitched short or gave width, while rotating the strike. Bangalore also gave lives to Rana twice — when Siraj dropped his catch at long off and Harshal Patel shelled a chance at fine leg in 13th and 15th overs.
Iyer signalled a shift in gears when he slammed Harshal down the ground for four, followed by Rana slamming consecutive sixes over deep backward square leg to take 19 runs off the 16th over. Rana then hit Vyshak for successive fours, followed by ending the 17th over with a lofted six over deep cover.
But Hasaranga took them out in the span of three balls in a no-boundary 18th over Rana’s attempt to reverse-sweep ended in short fine leg taking a forward diving catch while Iyer’s slog-sweep was caught by long-on.
Rinku straightaway got going by slogging Siraj over deep mid-wicket for six, followed by slicing through third man and driving over point to pick back-to-back fours in the 19th over, which the pacer ended by castling Andre Russell with a perfect yorker.
Wiese slammed Harshal for sixes over long-on and short third man to take Kolkata to exactly 200 as 15 runs came off the final over.
Brief Scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 200/5 in 20 overs (Jason Roy 56, Nitish Rana 48; Wanindu Hasaranga 2/24, Vyshak Vijaykumar 2/41) against Royal Challengers Bangalore.