WOW!! What a game we have witnessed!! After being down and out for most parts of the game but some excellent bowling at the death pulled the game back for the Capitals but a six from the blade of Tripathi was enough to take them through to the finals.
And with this, we come to the conclusion of the 2nd Qualifier of the 2021 Indian Premier League. Kolkata Knight Riders rode on their openers start and chased down this below-par total of 136 with 3 wickets in hand and move into the Finals of this coveted tournament. The match was destined to get over by the 18th over but the pacers came back at the death and almost gave a scare at the death to KKR hopes of qualification.
The plan was simple for the Knight Riders openers, take a head start in the powerplay and Venkatesh Iyer, Shubman Gill executed it to perfection. Having excelled in the last few games at Sharjah, the openers were on point once again, giving an impressive start to the Men in Purple and Gold in the powerplay. They brought up a solid 50-run partnership in the powerplay itself and played sensible cricket against the spin twins, Ashwin and Axar. Both the openers played risk-free cricket and took the game away from the reach of the Capitals in the powerplay itself.
Venkatesh Iyer brought up a remarkable half-century of just 38 balls and was well-supported by the youngster, Gill. The 96-run stand was finally ruptured in the 13th over with Rabada providing the first breakthrough for the Capitals but it was all too little, too late. Nitish Rana walked in the middle but soon fell prey to a short ball from Nortje but the required run rate was too low to make any dent in KKR’s qualification chances. DC made a game out of nothing at the death and pulled it back from the fire. Ashwin was brilliant in his last over picking Shakib and Narine in two balls but just one length ball proved enough to take KKR into the finals.
BANG AND OUT OF THE PARK!!!!! They have pulled off a heist here at Sharjah. Wow, wow, wow, wow!!! Rahul Tripathi is the hero, he does it in a Dhoni style. KKR BEAT DC BY THREE WICKETS, WITH ONE TO REMAINING. HEARTBREAK FOR THE DELHI CAPITALS! KOLKATA WIN THIS QUALIFIER AND THEY ARE INTO THE FINAL OF IPL.
There are dramatic scenes here in Sharjah. DC players are moaning, they aren't able to control their emotions. KKR players, on the other hand, are running onto the field, they too aren't able to control their emotions. The men in Black and Golden are all over their hero- Rahul Tripathi - who's getting hugs from everywhere, left-right-and-centre!!! Another short ball that Tripathi climbs into it! The batter sits deep in his crease and absolutely clatters that one over long off for a maximum to send KKR to the final! What a game this has been! The Knight Riders made a mess of it but it is Rahul Tripathi who turns out to be a breath-giver for them.
IPL, again, will not have a new-winner. You need to feel for Pant, You need to feel for Shaw, You need to feel for Nortje, You need to feel for Avesh, You need to feel for Iyer, You need to feel for Ashwin, You need to feel for Axar, You need to feel for KG. But you also need to stand up and applaud the efforts of Venky Iyer, the efforts of Gill, the efforts of Narine, the efforts of Varun, the efforts of Shakib, and most importantly the efforts of RAHUL TRIPATHI!!! The table-toppers of IPL 2021 get knocked out of the tournament. As KKR makes into their third IPL final.
Kolkata will face off the Chennai's Yellove Army on the 15th in the Grand Final of this Incredible Premier League.
Age 30 yrs
c A Patel b R Ashwin
Age 33 yrs
lbw R Ashwin
Kolkata Knight Riders