IPL 2022, RR vs KKR, Top Performances: Jos Buttler’s 103, Yuzvendra Chahal’s 5-40 & Aaron Finch-Shreyas Iyer 107-run second wicket stand are the top performances
Brief Scores: RR 217-5 (Buttler 103, Samson 38, Narine 21-2) beat KKR 210 all-out (Shreyas Iyer 85, Finch 58, Chahal 40-5) by seven runs
Player of the Match: Yuzvendra Chahal for 40-5
Prior to this game, Kolkata had faced Royals 25 times in IPL history and defeated the latter 13 times. Royals had won nine games and two games resulted in ties. It is noteworthy that Brabourne Stadium has been an unlucky ground for KKR as they hadn’t tasted victory even once on the four occasions they had played at this hallowed venue by the Marine Drive in Mumbai.
After winning the toss, KKR skipper Shreyas Iyer opted to field first. KKR dropped young pacer Aman Khan to include Shivam Mavi in the playing eleven. Rajasthan Royals made three changes in their playing eleven from the previous game by excluding Rassie van der Dussen, Kuldeep Sen and James Neesham to include Karun Nair, Obed McCoy and Trent Boult in their places.
Royals defeated Kolkata by a slender margin of seven runs in a high-scoring encounter
As KKR put Royals in to bat first, Jos Buttler and Devdutt Padikkal opened the innings for the latter. The opening pair of Buttler and Padikkal played well in the powerplay. Buttler carried most of the innings on his shoulders to smash a phenomenal century by stitching vital partnerships with Padikkal and skipper Sanju Samson. Shimron Hetmyer helped the Royals reach a humongous total of 217 runs in 20 overs with a quickfire finishing act.
While chasing a huge total of 218 runs, Shreyas Iyer and Aaron Finch added 107 runs for the second wicket to keep Kolkata in the match. However, the failure of Andre Russell, Pat Cummins and Venkatesh Iyer took the match into the final over, in which pacer Obed McCoy bagged the last two wickets of KKR and helped his side win the match by seven runs.
Let’s take a look at the top three performances from this high-profile encounter between KKR and RR.
Jos Buttler notched up another century
Rajasthan Royals opener Jos Buttler has been in spectacular form in this season of IPL. His form peaked today against Kolkata as he hammered his second century this season. The 31-year-old wicketkeeper-batter started with two back-to-back boundaries off pacer Umesh Yadav in the third over of the game. The batter never looked back and continued to attack the opponent bowlers throughout the innings. Buttler smoked a huge six down the ground off leg-spinner Varun Chakravarthy. The right-handed batter continued to shower boundaries towards all parts of the ground against opponent bowlers except spinner Sunil Narine. He completed his fifty in just 29 deliveries by cracking a boundary off Pat Cummins.
After the loss of Padikkal, Buttler continued to play his attacking strokes. One down batter Samson also played a quickfire knock to add 67 runs with Buttler. After the wicket of Samson, Buttler completed his third IPL century in just 59 balls by launching a huge six over long on. At last Cummins dismissed Buttler, as Chakravarthy grabbed his catch at the fine leg boundary. Buttler made 103 runs off 61 deliveries by smacking nine boundaries and five sixes.
Shreyas Iyer and Aaron Finch kept KKR in the hunt with a 107-run stand for the second wicket
Royals posted a huge target of 218 runs in front of KKR, which looked unachievable for any team. However, after losing the wicket of opener Sunil Narine on the first ball of the innings, Finch and skipper Shreyas Iyer stitched an essential partnership for the second wicket to keep KKR in the race of chasing the target.
Shreyas Iyer came to bat in the first over of the innings itself and announced himself by smashing two back-to-back boundaries. He repeated the same feat in the next over by cracking two more boundaries off pacer Prasidh Krishna. His partner Finch also joined the fun by pummeling two boundaries off pacer Trent Boult. Both batters continued to milk runs by smashing opponent bowlers.
Finch smoked three boundaries off leggie Yuzvendra Chahal. He batted aggressively to complete his fifty off just 25 deliveries. However, Finch was dismissed by Prasidh Krishna while hitting an uppercut as Karun Nair grabbed his catch at third man. He made 58 runs off just 28 deliveries by cracking nine boundaries and two sixes. Krishna had bagged the wicket of Finch only once before this encounter in two games while conceding 20 runs off 15 deliveries.
Iyer continued to bat aggressively by smashing sixes at will. Nitish Rana and Andre Russell couldn't assist Iyer in this huge chase. Rana was dismissed on 18 by Chahal and Russell was sent back to the hut by spinner Ravichandran Ashwin on duck. Despite losing batters at the other end, Iyer continued to play big strokes to help his side reach close to the target. However, after the wicket of Venkatesh Iyer, Shreyas hurried to a stroke in desperation and got trapped plumb in front of the wicket by Chahal. Iyer’s stupendous knock of 85 runs was studded with seven fours and four elephantine sixes.
Chahal bagged the wicket of Shreyas first time in IPL. Before this encounter, Iyer had a remarkable record against Chahal; he had amassed 72 runs off 51 balls bowled by Chahal with a strike rate of 141.17 in eight innings.
Yuzvendra Chahal flattened KKR with the first fifer in the season
Yuzvendra Chahal, who was signed by the Royals for INR 6.5 crores in the 2022 IPL mega-auction, has proved to be plain unplayable for opponent batters this season. In this match, he single-handedly turned the game in favour of the Royals by taking the first fifer of this season.
When Nitish Rana was looking for big shots, Chahal sent him back to the dugout for a personal score of 18. Also, he foxed Venkatesh Iyer to shatter his stumps for a personal score of just six. In the same over, he trapped Shreyas in front of the wickets, who was playing a phenomenal knock and could have taken the match away from the Royals. On the next two deliveries, Chahal bagged the wickets of Shivam Mavi and explosive hitter Pat Cummins to complete the first hat-trick in this season of IPL and completed the over with four wickets.
Chahal bagged five wickets in the innings by spending 40 runs in his quota of four overs in such a high-scoring game to turn the match on its head.
IPL 2022 Points Table
What’s to come
KL Rahul-led Lucknow Super Giants will face Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Dr DY Patil Sports Academy on April 19.
Top Twitter Reactions from RR vs KKR Match
Top Tweets on Jos Buttler's 2nd IPL 2022 Hundred (103)
Top Tweeter reactions as Yuzvendra Chahal takes hat trick in IPL 2022: