MAY 23, 2018
Brief Scorecard: Kolkata Knight Riders 169 for 7 (Karthik 52, Russell 49*, Gowtham 2-15) beat Rajasthan Royals 144 for 4 (Samson 50, Rahane 46, Chawla 2-24) by 25 runs
KOLKATA – Skipper Dinesh Karthik and Andre Russell helped Kolkata Knight Riders knock Rajasthan Royals out of this cricket season’s Indian Premier League with a 25-run win in the eliminator on Wednesday.
Karthik, who made 52, and Russell, who smashed 49 not out, helped Knight Riders to 169-7, a total their bowlers defended by restricting Royals to 144-4 at Kolkata’s Eden Gardens.
Leg-spinner Piyush Chawla claimed two wickets including dangerman Sanju Samson for 50 to choke Royals out of the do-or-die contest of the cash-rich Twenty20 tournament.
Skipper Ajinkya Rahane, who made 46, and Samson put on 62 runs for the second wicket as Royals’ chase looked on course at 109-1. But Rahane’s wicket spelt trouble for the 2008 champions.
Left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav, who got Rahane caught and bowled, returned excellent figures of 1-18 to keep Knight Riders alive in the title race.
Two-time champions Knight Riders will now meet Sunrisers Hyderabad in the second qualifier in Kolkata on Friday to try and book a title clash with Chennai Super Kings.
Royals off-spinner Krishnappa Gowtham got two early wickets to rattle Knight Riders’ top-order as the home side were reduced to 51-4 after being put into bat first.
Pacemen Jofra Archer and Ben Laughlin also picked up two wickets each to hurt Knight Riders batting but Karthik and Russell took the attack to the opposition bowing.
Karthik, who hit his second fifty of this season’s IPL, put together a fifth-wicket 55-run partnership with Shubman Gill, who made 28 to steady the innings.
May 23, 2018: Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals, IPL 2018, Eliminator, Kolkata – Andre Russell’s unbeaten 49, including five sixes and three fours, helped KKR post 169 for 7 – BCCI
Russell soon took over from his captain to smash three fours and five sixes during his 25-ball blitz to give the hosts 55 runs in the last five overs.
The IPL final is on May 27 at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium with $4 million going to the winner.