Mumbai Indians were a far better side before going into this game than Kolkata Knight Riders. Although they lost this match not because KKR played superbly but because they were not able to connect some dots properly.
Before the match at the press conference, Andre Rusell had a go against his own team. He went on to speak some harsh words about the team selection and not able to defend the score. He spoke many things about the team which was basically directed towards Dinesh Karthik.
Mumbai Indians won an important toss at the Eden Gardens and as usual, they elected to field first. KKR have finally given a batting position to Shubman Gill that he deserves. Gill opened up the innings with Lynn. They both went all guns blazing against MI’s bowlers and had a partnership of 96 runs for the first wicket before Lynn was dismissed for 54 runs by Rahul Chahar. KKR was in no mood to do anything wrong and sent Rusell at number 3. Both of them never lost the momentum and added another 62 runs for the second wicket. Gill scored 76 runs off 45 balls. The young lad was in good touch throughout the innings. Rusell scored 80 runs not out and KKR scored 232 runs which is the highest score of this season.
The approach towards such high scores is simply to attack every ball. Mumbai Indians’ batsmen had the same approach but they were not able to execute it properly. They lost their top four for 58 runs. On 6th position walked out Hardik Pandya when only 70 balls were left in the innings and they needed another 175 runs to win the game. Pandya junior played the next 34 balls of MI’s innings and scored 91 runs before being dismissed on the last ball of 18th over. KKR won the game by 34 runs in the end. No other batsman other than Pandya was able to score properly. If one batsman had played differently then the results would have been different.
With this win, KKR went to 5th position. KKR has the worst record against MI and they won a game against MI after four long years.
This has made the points table much more complex and we’ll need to wait a few more days to have a clear picture of the playoffs.