Published from Mumbai, Delhi & Bhopal

Kuldeep, Mustafizur, Warner shine as Capitals beat Knight Riders

Mumbai : After the super bowling by Kuldeep Yadav (4/14) and Mustafizur Rahman (3/18), David Warner and Rovman Powell played remarkable knocks to help Delhi Capitals beat Kolkata Knight Riders by four wickets in Match 41 of the IPL 2022 at the Wankhede Stadium here on Thursday.

Kuldeep looked at his brilliant best against his old franchise and bowled like he had something to prove. He tossed up the ball, mixed the wrong’un and sliders well, and varied the pace.

He and Mustafizur overshadowed a fine rearguard half-century by Nitish Rana (57 off 34) as Kolkata Knight Riders were restricted to 146/9 in 20 overs after Delhi won the toss and elected to bowl.

In reply, Delhi Capitals reached 150/6 in 19 overs thanks to vital knocks by Warner, Lalit Yadav (22) Axar Patel (24) and Powell (33 not out) as they scored their fourth win in 8 matches.

Chasing a modest target, Rishabh Pant’s side got off to a worst-possible start as opener Prithvi Shaw was out for a first-ball duck in the first over, caught and bowled by Umesh Yadav. Mitchell Marsh, too, departed soon, out for 13 runs off seven balls before becoming Harshit Rana’s first IPL victim and Delhi were reduced to 17/2.

David Warner (42) and Lalit Yadav (22) raised 65 runs for the third wicket before the Aussie was out, trying to negotiate a difficult bouncer on the middle by Umesh Yadav and holing out to Sunil Narine just two yards inside the rope. Though the other batters were struggling, Warner looked in control, hitting Tim Southee to two boundaries in the 4th over and two boundaries off successive deliveries by Nitish Rana in the ninth over.

Delhi lost their way a bit after that as Lalit Yadav and skipper Pant fell in quick succession but Axar Patel kept them in the hunt as he blasted a 17-ball 24 to take them to 36 off 30 deliveries at one stage. Patel was run-out at a crucial juncture, caught short going for a second run as Shreyas Iyer made a brilliant throw running in from the boundary.

But Rovman Powell saw them through in the end, hitting a 16-ball 33 to help them record their fourth win and move to sixth position with eight points. KKR remained in the eighth position with six points from nine matches.

Delhi had to chase a modest target thanks to Kuldeep Yadav, who looked at his brilliant best against his old franchise and bowled like he had something to prove. He sent back KKR skipper Shreyas Iyer (42), Baba Indrajith (6), Sunil Narine (0) and Andre Russell (0) to finish with 4/14. It was a pity that he did not get to bowl his fourth over or could have completed a fifer.

Mustafizur claimed three wickets in the 20th over, sending back Nitish Rana, Tim Southee and Rinku Singh — Rana and Southee off successive balls.

KKR could reach a modest total thanks mainly to Nitish Rana (57), who shared a 62-run partnership off 35 balls with Rinku Singh.

Rana continued the onslaught in death overs as he hammered Lalit Yadav for 17 runs in the 17th over, including a six off a beamer wide of off-stump and another blasted another six off a wide half-volley over point.

Rana and Rinku Singh shared a 62-run partnership off 35 balls for the seventh wicket that really propped up the KKR innings.

They could have got a few more runs but Rinku was out off the second ball off the final over by Mustafizur Rahman and after Umesh Yadav had scampered for one leg-bye, Rana holed out to sweeper cover trying to force some quick runs. Mustafizur gave away only two runs in the 20th over and claimed three wickets, thus applying the brakes on KKR’s free-scoring that had produced 43 overs in three overs from 17-19.

Earlier, KKR got off to a poor start, losing Aaron Finch in the second over and were soon down to 35/4 losing Venkatesh Iyer, Baba Aprajith and Sunil Narine with each of them scoring in singles digits.

Skipper Shreyas Iyer halted the procession and raised 48 runs with Nitish Rana, building the innings brick-by-brick with singles and in between hitting four boundaries — all of them of Axar Patel. He was given out by the video umpire, falling to a wrong’un by Kuldeep as Rishabh Pant completed a low, shin-high one-handed catch.

KKR lost the plot in the middle overs as Kuldeep and Axar ruled the roost, Pant made some strange bowling changes — giving three overs to Lalit Yadav, which cost them 32 runs while Kuldeep and Chetan Sakariya, who gave away 14 and 12 runs respectively in three overs were denied the fourth.

Brief scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 146/9 in 20 overs (Shreyas Iyer 42, Nitish Rana 57; Kuldeep Yadav 4/14, Mustafizur Rahman 3/18) lost to Delhi Capitals 150/6 in 19 overs (David Warner 42, Lalit Yadav 22, Axar Patel 24, Rovman Powell 33 not out; Umesh Yadav 3/24). DC won by four wickets.

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