At 122/3, KKR was well placed to win the game, with 31 runs required off 31 balls. But it wasn’t to be as the Mumbai bowlers conjured a heist to remember, winning by 10 runs, and further skewing the one-sided rivalry to 22-6 now.
Virender Sehwag laments the slow-go batting approach of Andre Russell and Dinesh Karthik, two of the finest finishers of the modern game. Russell, who had taken a five-wicket haul while bowling to set up the game for KKR, was dropped twice in his 15-ball scratchy stay for 9 runs, 4 of which coming from a free hit. Karthik remained unbeaten on 9 off 11 balls, but couldn’t take his side over the line.
“Eoin Morgan had given a statement that they will play that way (with postive intent) after the first game but it didn’t look like that when Andre Russell and Dinesh Karthik came in to bat.
“The way Russell and Karthik batted, it felt like they planned to take the game till the end and win it. But that didn’t happen. The batters who came before them – be it Shakib Al Hasan, Eoin Morgan, Shubman Gill or Nitish Rana – all of them played with positive intent,” Virender Sehwag said while speaking to Cricbuzz.
Either Rana or Gill should have batted till the end: Virender Sehwag
Of the three matches so far in Chennai, it has been clear that the new batsman will find it difficult to get going, especially in the death overs, barring a captain AB de Villiers. Virender Sehwag reckons the same by saying that one of the two openers should have continued batting till the end after setting themselves in the first half of the chase.
Nitish Rana struck his second fifty of the season in as many games, while Shubman Gill scored 33 runs. But both the opener got out playing rash shots, which were followed by more unnecessary slogs from the middle-order before Russell and Karthik struggled for timing.
Eoin Morgan’s side has a few days time to ponder over their loss before they take on Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore on Sunday in an afternoon game.
“Either Rana or Gill should have batted till the end. They had seen what had happened in the MI innings, despite getting off to a good start they could only manage 152. The runs per ball difference wasn’t much except for the last couple of overs.
“We saw how to lose a game that is almost won. You hardly get any game where you are chasing 152 and you need to score 36-odd runs in 6 overs with 6-7 wickets in hand. In such scenarios, teams prefer to end the game quickly to improve their net run rate. But KKR failed to do that and hampered their net-run rate,” Virender Sehwag stated.