Rinku Singh’s fighting knock of 67 runs wasn’t enough as Lucknow Super Giants defeated Kolkata Knight Riders by a slender 1-run marring in an absolute thriller of a contest at the Eden Gardens. Rinku, who has produced some heroic chases this season for the Knight Riders, almost pulled off another one on Saturday. Rinku made his intentions clear in the final phases of the game, especially when he slammed a gigantic 110-meter six against LSG pacer Naveen-ul-Haq to bring up his half-century.
Rinku Singh’s 110 meter six aganist Naveen.
What a hit. pic.twitter.com/1MgiE4pJXX
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) May 20, 2023
Fans were left awestruck seeing Rinku’s monstrous hit. But, in the end, it just wasn’t enough.
While the victory assured LSG of a playoff berth, a defeat to KKR put curtains on their IPL 2023 campaign.
Chasing 177, KKR were off to a flier as Venkatesh Iyer smashed a couple of fours and a six off Mohsin Khan in the first over. Jason Roy then went after Naveen-ul-Haq and cracked a couple of fours and a cracking straight six to make it 15 again, off the second over. Krunal then brought himself into the attack and bowled a decent over, giving away just six runs. The pair took 9 runs off K Gowtham and Roy then took the attack to Krunal, hitting three fours in a row to make it 14 off the over.
Gowtham finally got LSG the breakthrough as he had Iyer (24 off 15) caught at extra cover as KKR reached 61/1 at the end of the Powerplay. Ravi Bishoni then provided another breakthrough as he had captain Nitish Rana caught at extra cover off a leading edge for his 100th T20 wicket. KKR lost another one in quick succession as Krunal cleaned up Roy (45 off 28) to help the away side claw their way back into the match.
LSG bowled with accuracy and discipline and kept things tight. The pressure brought the wicket as Rahmanullah Gurbaz went for a big one but got an outside edge to backward point off Impact Player Yash Thakur where Bishnoi took a juggling catch. Thakur bowled a fantastic over and gave away just three.
Naveen bowled another decent over, giving away just six as the equation came to 63 needed off 30 balls. Russell tried to up the scoring, cracking a straight six off Bishnoi but the LSG spinner bounced back to have Russell’s off stump knocked down off the next ball. It was another very good over for LSG with just seven runs coming off it along with the big wicket of Russell.
With 56 needed off 24, Naveen bowled another good over, conceding just five. Rinku Singh finally released some pressure as he swung one over deep backward square leg for a six. But Yash Thakur bounced back to dismiss Shardul Thakur as he had him caught at deep square leg off a short ball. KKR lost another in the over as Sunil Narine was run out trying to go for a risky second.
Yash made an excellent comeback to give away just four more runs apart from that six from Rinku. With 41 needed off 12 balls, Rinku Singh hit three fours in a row, one off the outside edge, one rocketing off the middle through extra cover off Naveen and one slashed over short third man. He then scampered through for a risky two off the next ball to bring the equation down to 27 off 8. He clobbered the next ball over deep square leg for a 110m six to bring up his fifty off just 27 balls. He swung and missed the last one as 20 runs came off the over.
With 21 needed off six, Krunal handed the ball to Impact Player Yash Thakur. Vaibhav Arora bunted the first ball down the ground and gave the strike to Rinku. Yash bowled the next one wide outside off and it was called a WIDE. The next ball was fast and short and Rinku was beaten for pace as the ball flicked his helmet even before he could complete his shot. The next one was in the blockhole and Rinku mistimed his heave to deep mid-wicket. He didn’t take the single. The next one was a wide.
With 18 needed off 3, Runku Singh smashed it over the deep mid-wicket stands to provide hope of another miracle. With 12 needed off 2, Yash bowled it very full and Rinku crashed it through extra cover only for a four. With 8 needed off 1, Rinku smacked it over long on where the fielder parried it over the ropes for a six as the home side fell agonisingly short by two runs.
With ANI Inputs
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