Piyush Chawla (left) and Dinesh Karthik were two of the architects of KKR's win in Eliminator © IANS
Piyush Chawla (left) and Dinesh Karthik were two of the architects of KKR’s win in Eliminator © IANS

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) came from behind and pulled off a thriller over Rajasthan Royals (RR) at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, in the IPL Eliminator to set a date with Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in Qualifier 2 at the same venue on Friday. KKR won by 25 runs at their home to knock out the Royals, courtesy excellent death bowling and some fine show by their wrist-spinners, Piyush Chawla and Kuldeep Yadav.

Chasing 170 on a wicket where the ball gripped on to the ball, RR were 87 for 1 after 10 overs. In a baffling turn of events they could just manage 57 for 3 in their last 10 overs.

Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi got Rajasthan off to a solid start. Rahane showed his intent right from the start, cutting Andre Russell in the first over for six. Tripathi came to the party in the fifth over, smashing Sunil Narine for consecutive sixes. Kolkata lost their only review when they challenged a decision in the fifth over. Tripathi survived. Earlier, Rahane was given LBW off Piyush Chawla but RR had successfully challenged the decision.

Chawla struck with the first ball of the sixth over when Tripathi misread a googly and spooned it straight back to him. The wicket did not have an effect on the run flow. Sanju Samson wove an important stand with his captain. The 47-run first wicket partnership was followed by another brilliant stand of 62 in 54 balls.

Rahane and Samson milked the KKR bowling with ease, minimising the dot balls and making every scoring opportunity count. The hundred came up in the 13th over.

Kuldeep turned tides in the 15th over when he foxed Rahane and nabbed a simple caught-and-bowled. The over went for just 2 and the required run rate shot to almost 12. Sunil Narine went wicketless in his 4 overs but gave away only 8, ensuring the required rate was almost 13.

Highlights, IPL 2018 Playoffs, KKR vs RR, Full Cricket Score and Updates, Eliminator at Kolkata: KKR win by 25 runs
Highlights, IPL 2018 Playoffs, KKR vs RR, Full Cricket Score and Updates, Eliminator at Kolkata: KKR win by 25 runs

Dinesh Karthik bowled out Chawla in the following over. He went for 8 but got the wicket of Samson, who had just completed a stroke-filled fifty.

Prasidh Krishna bowled a brilliant 18th over, giving away just 3 and taking Stuart Binny with his last ball. Neither Heinrich Klaasen nor Krishnappa Gowtham got going, and the Royals could manage just 14 runs off the final 2 overs, courtesy brilliant death bowling from Andre Russell and Krishna (4-0-28-1).

Earlier, electing to field, RR gained the upper hand when off-spinner Gowtham got 2 wickets in his first 2 overs, dismissing Narine and Robin Uthappa. KKR were reduced to 24 for 3 in the fourth over when for the umpteenth time this season, Karthik produced a classic against the odds. Karthik added 55 with Shubman Gill. While Gill departed for a 17-ball 28, Karthik went on to register his 16th IPL fifty. Russell gave the innings a fitting finish with a 25-ball 49, a knock laced with 5 monstrous sixes.

More on first innings

Brief scores:

Kolkata Knight Riders 169 for 7 in 20 overs [Dinesh Karthik 52 (38), Shubman Gill 28 (17), Andre Russell 49 (25); Krishnappa Gowtham 3-0-15-2, Jofra Archer 4-0-33-2] beat Rajasthan Royals 144 for 4 in 20 overs [Ajinkya Rahane 46 (41), Sanju Samson 50 (38); Piyush Chawla 4-0-24-2, Kuldeep Yadav 4-0-18-1]

Player of the Match: Andre Russell.

Full Scorecard