Kolkata Knight Riders got their campaign off to a winning start on Sunday as they beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by 10 runs in Match 3 of the Indian Premier League 2021 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Defending a target of 188 for victory, KKR restricted SRH to 177 for 5 in 20 overs to win the match and collect 2 important points from their campaign opener in Chennai.
Manish Pandey, Jonny Bairstow and Abdul Samad played valiant knocks but the target proved too far of their reach as dew also played a big factor in the match.
Pandey remained unbeaten on 61 off 44 balls with 2 fours, 3 sixes while Bairstow scored 55 and Samad made 19 not out.
KKR pacer Prasidg Krishna was the pick of the bowlers with 2 for 35 while Shakib Al Hasan, Pat Cummins and Andre Russell bagged a wicket each for the two-time champions.
Russell defended 21 off the last over to ensure victory for Dinesh Karthik’s Kolkata Knight Riders.
The win was KKR’s 100th in the IPL making them the third team after Mumbai Indians (120) and Chennai Super Kings (106) to achieve the feat in this competition.
“I didn’t think there were that many runs on this wicket. They adapted really well, had a good partnership. We misexecuted the first ball of most overs and then conceded a lot at the end. We lost early wickets, and Jonny and Manish got us in a good position, so we had our chances. The dew made a difference.
“If the bowlers overpitched, it was easy to hit it, and with the height in their team, and with the cross-seam, it stopped a little bit on us. We would like to have won the first game, but we have four more games at this venue and hopefully we will get used to the square and the dimensions of this ground,” SRH skipper David Warner said after the match.
Earlier, opener Nitish Rana (80) and Rahul Tripathi (53) hit fluent half-centuries to propel Kolkata Knight Riders to a challenging 187 for six against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
SRH’s Rashid Khan (2/24) was yet again at his best, asking tough questions to the batsmen but most of his bowling colleagues proved ineffective on a batting-friendly wicket.
Dinesh Karthik (22 not out off 9 balls) provided a late flourish to KKR innings but they could gather only 42 runs in the last five overs.