CHENNAI: Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers' knocks of 78 and 76 were backed up a spirited bowling performance as Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) defeated Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 38 runs on Sunday here at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Andre Russell played a knock of runs for KKR, but in the end, RCB managed to hold on to record their third victory in a row this season. This is the first time that RCB has managed to win their first three games in an IPL season.
Chasing 205, KKR got off to a flier as Shubman Gill scored 21 runs off just nine balls, but in trying to look for another big shot, Gill lost his wicket to Kyle Jamieson in the second over of the innings. Rahul Tripathi then joined Nitish Rana in the middle and the duo put on 34 runs for the second wicket, but in looking for a maximum, Tripathi (25) ended up losing his wicket to Shubman Gill in the sixth over, reducing KKR to 57/2.
In the very next over, Yuzvendra Chahal managed to send Rana (18) back to the pavilion and KKR was left in a spot of bother at 66/3. KKR fell further into a slump as Dinesh Karthik (2) failed to impress with the bat and ended up losing his wicket to Chahal. Eoin Morgan played a 29-run knock from 23 balls, but his innings was cut short by Harshal Patel with KKR still needing 91 more runs for the win.
Andre Russell came out to bat next and he even hit Yuzvendra Chahal for 19 runs in the 17th over and as a result, KKR needed 59 runs for the win from the final three overs. Shakib Al Hasan (26) and Pat Cummins (6) lost their wickets to Jamieson in the 18th over and it all boiled down to Russell. In the end, the task proved too much and KKR ended up stumbling to a 38-run loss.
Earlier, RCB might have been 9/2 in the second over, but Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers' knocks of 78 and 76 ensured that the side posts a total of 204/4 in the allotted twenty overs. Along with Maxwell and de Villiers, Devdutt Padikkal and Kyle Jamieson also played knocks of 25 and 11 respectively. For KKR, Varun Chakravarthy returned with two wickets.
Opting to bat first, RCB got off to a bad start as the side lost wickets of Virat Kohli (5) and Rajat Patidar (1) in the second over of the innings. Varun Chakravarthy provided the first two breakthroughs to KKR. Maxwell then joined Padikkal in the crease and the duo revived the innings for RCB.
Padikkal played a second fiddle while Maxwell took on the mantle of being the aggressor. The right-handed Maxwell hammered KKR bowlers all around the park and he was looking set to take RCB's score beyond the 180-run mark. Prasidh Krishna finally provided the much-needed breakthrough to KKR as he dismissed Padikkal (25) in the 12th over, ending the 86-run third-wicket partnership and reducing RCB to 95/3.
De Villiers then joined Maxwell in the middle and the duo further accelerated the innings, not giving KKR bowlers any sort of respite. Maxwell (78) finally departed in the 17th over as Pat Cummins bounced him out. However, the Proteas batsman carried on with the momentum and in the end, RCB posted a total of more than the 200-run mark.
Brief Scores: RCB 204/4 (Glenn Maxwell 78, Ab de Villiers 76*, Varun Chakravarthy 2-39) beat KKR 166/8 (Andre Russell 31, Eoin Morgan 29, Kyle Jamieson 3-41) by 38 runs.