Kolkata Knight Riders beat Chennai Super Kings by six wickets at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai to stay alive in the IPL 2023 playoff race. Although CSK is still well-placed to make it to the last four, a win on Sunday could’ve sealed the deal for MS Dhoni’s men.
Deepak Chahar threatened to break the back of KKR’s 145-run chase with three wickets in the PowerPlay, with the dismissal of Venkatesh Iyer standing out. Knowing Iyer’s tendency to stay leg-side of the ball and hit square on the off side, Dhoni had a short-third in place to grab the edge, and that is where Iyer’s catch went.
With his team three down for 46 after six overs, Nitish Rana, in the company of Rinku Singh, calmed frayed nerves. The presence of two left-handers at the crease meant Dhoni had to delay introducing Ravindra Jadeja into the attack. Meanwhile, Rinku eased the pressure with two boundaries off Moeen Ali in the ninth over. And when Jadeja finally came on in the 12th over, Rinku carted him for a six.
In between, Rana got a reprieve when Matheesha Pathirana dropped him at deep backward square. He made CSK pay with two inside-out boundaries off Moeen over covers in the 13th over. Both batters reached their respective fifties, and their 99-run stand ultimately ensured the raucous cheers of CSK fans gave way to gasps of despair and a well-deserved KKR win.
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