Twitter Reactions: Morgan, Tripathi snap KKR's losing streak after bowlers suffocate Punjab Kings

Twitter Reactions: Morgan, Tripathi snap KKR’s losing streak after bowlers suffocate Punjab Kings

The Riders underwent slight trouble at the start but a 66-run stand between Eoin Morgan and Rahul Tripathi eventually got them across the line.

Eoin Morgan and Rahul Tripathi
Eoin Morgan and Rahul Tripathi. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

The Kolkata Knight Riders snapped their streak of four IPL losses at Ahmedabad, defeating Punjab Kings by 5 wickets on the back of a sensational bowling performance and an unbeaten 47 from skipper Eoin Morgan.

Calling rightly at the toss, the skipper of an unchanged eleven, Morgan, inserted the Punjab Kings – who brought in Chris Jordan for Fabian Allen – to bat. On a slightly two-paced surface, the Kings were given a sedate but reliable start by the openers, KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal, who added 36 from 35 before things went south for the team.

Both Rahul and Mayank got rolling in Pat Cummins’ opening over, as the latter top-edged a six over third-man for a six, while Rahul cut the pacer past point to get his first boundary. Hitting another couple of fours and a six among them in the powerplay, the steady start was broken when the Kings’ skipper Rahul skied a Cummins ball to mid-on to walk back for a 20-ball 19.

1 2 3… PBKS tumble to 123

Yes! That is how quickly things happened after a sluggish start. Eyes were on the explosive middle-order of the Kings, which never quite got going thanks to the KKR’s admirable bowling effort. Shivam Mavi sent Chris Gayle packing for a golden duck as he bottom-edged an away-going delivery behind; and finished 1/13, bowling four overs on the trot.

Watching his team drown, Agarwal (31 off 34) struck around for a while after Deepak Hooda became Prasidh Krishna’s first scalp of the night. However, a sensational, tumbling catch by Rahul Tripathi off Sunil Narine’s bowling proved to be Agarwal’s end soon too.

The team would have expected more than a run-a-ball 19 from Nicholas Pooran after he took on Varun Chakravarthy, picking a six and four off successive deliveries, but the bowler had the last laugh, knocking his off-stump down in his next over.

Between Pooran and Agarwal’s dismissal was the fall of Moises Henriques, who allowed Narine to sneak through his bat and pad to clean him up. It was thanks to Chris Jordan’s 18-ball 30, which included a boundary and three sixes that took Punjab to a score of respectability. Having removed Shahrukh Khan earlier, Krishna knocked over Jordan in the final over to finish 3/30.

Morgan, Tripathi steady KKR after a nervy start

Set 124, the speculations of a low-scoring thriller increased as KKR’s struggle in the powerplay continued. The agenda of early wickets for the Kings was fulfilled by Henriques and Mohammad Shami, who sent the openers in the first two overs of the Riders’ response. Nitish Rana perished for a golden duck, hitting Henriques’ full-toss straight to cover, while Shami pinned Shubman Gill lbw for an 8-ball 9. The 9/2 soon became 17/3 when Ravi Bishnoi sprinted a mini-marathon, dived, slid, and caught Narine off Arshdeep Singh to complete a belief-defying catch.

KKR and Rahul Tripathi had their heart in the mouth when Gayle’s direct hit was taken upstairs, although replays showed he reached safely. As skipper Morgan counterattacked Shami, Tripathi picked Arshdeep to produce 25 from the next three overs, taking the team to 42/3 by the end of the powerplay.

Tripathi got a reprieve when Rahul missed a stumping off Bishnoi’s bowling, but playing sensibly otherwise, with a mix of caution and aggression, the duo added 66 from 48 for the third wicket. The Riders underwent slight trouble when Tripathi (41 off 32) holed out to long-on off Deepak Hooda, and Andre Russell was run-out four overs later, but Morgan‘s unbeaten 40-ball 47 and Dinesh Karthik took them across the line with plenty to spare.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: