Kolkata Knight Riders have made it to the final of the Indian Premier League 2021 with the help of their bowlers’ brilliant performance and Venkatesh Iyer’s half-century. They defeated last season’s runners-up Delhi Capitals by 3 wickets in the match played at Sharjah Stadium on Wednesday. They will face three-time champions Chennai Super Kings in the final on Friday. The match turned very exciting in the last overs. But from Kolkata’s side, Rahul Tripathi gave his team victory by hitting a six.
Kolkata won the toss and decided to bowl first. On the slow pitch of Sharjah, its bowlers performed well and restricted Delhi’s strong batsman to 135 for 5 wickets.
Strong start for Kolkata
The target was not big in front of Kolkata but scoring runs on this ground has not been easy. In such a situation, Kolkata’s team could not take the match lightly. He didn’t even take it. Kolkata openers Venkatesh Iyer and Shubman Gill made a quick start to the innings. Left-handed Iyer looked particularly aggressive. Kolkata had crossed the 50 mark in the powerplay itself.
Dew bowling increased on the field became difficult
The Kolkata team also played its last match at this ground. He defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore in Eliminator. At the same time, the Delhi team was coming here from Dubai. Because of this, the recent conditions at this ground were probably better known. At the time of his batting, the dew had become very high and the bowlers were facing problems. Kolkata took full advantage of this.
For Kolkata, young batsman Venkatesh Iyer completed his half-century in just 38 balls. He hit three sixes and as many fours in it. This left-handed batsman did not allow any bowler to set whether Kagiso Rabada or Axar Patel. Kolkata completed their 100 runs in the 14th over.
Earlier, Kolkata Knight Riders restricted Delhi Capitals to 135 for five in the second IPL qualifier on Wednesday, led by spinner Varun Chakravarthy. The Delhi batsmen, who were sent to bat first, struggled on the slow pitch while the KKR bowlers bowled with precise lines and lengths. Opener Shikhar Dhawan scored 36 off 39 balls while Shreyas Iyer remained unbeaten on 30 off 27 balls.
Chakraborty took two wickets for 26 runs while Lockie Ferguson and Shivam Mavi got a wicket each. After seven dot balls in the first two overs, Delhi took 12 runs in the third over in which Prithvi Shaw also hit Shakib Al Hasan for a six. Dhawan hit Sunil Narine for two consecutive sixes in the fourth over. Delhi scored 14 runs in this over.
Chakraborty broke the partnership, which seemed to be dangerous, and dismissed Shaw leg before the very first ball. Ferguson conceded just nine runs in the first two overs. Delhi scored 38 for one in the powerplay overs.
Mavi, Narine and Chakraborty bowled economical in the middle overs. Dhawan hit a boundary in the tenth over to take Delhi to 65 runs. It was getting difficult to score runs as the ball was facing down. In such a situation, Mavi gave another blow to Delhi by dismissing Marcus Stoinis. Stoinis was playing only the second match in the UAE leg of the IPL.
Dhawan was also dismissed in the 15th over for playing a big shot. Shakib Al Hasan dived at backward point off Chakraborty’s ball and caught him. Delhi’s three wickets had fallen for 83 runs in the 15th over. Captain Rishabh Pant was dismissed for six runs. He was caught by Rahul Tripathi off Ferguson’s ball.
Meanwhile, in the 17th over, Shubman Gill caught Shimron Hetmyer off Chakraborty’s ball but it turned out to be a no-ball. Delhi scored 36 runs in the last three overs.