Narine powers KKR; Pooran, Jordan


Narine powers KKR; Pooran, Jordan

Sunday, October 25, 2020

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ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (CMC) — Sunil Narine's first half-century of the season fired Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to a crucial win while West Indies teammate Nicholas Pooran and Barbadian-born England star Chris Jordan combined to deliver a fourth-straight win for Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League here yesterday.

Playing at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, the left-handed Narine belted 64 from 32 balls as KKR stormed to a challenging 194 for six off their 20 overs, with Nitish Rana top-scoring with 81 off 53 balls.

In reply, West Indies left-hander Shimron Hetmyer failed with 10 as Delhi Capitals were held to 135 for nine, handing KKR a solid 59-run win.

Sent in, KKR found themselves tottering on 42 for three in the eighth over before opener Nitish Rana top-scored with 81 in a critical, 115-run, fourth-wicket stand with Narine to rescue the innings.

The left-handed Rana stroked 13 fours and a six while Narine, whose highest score in five previous innings was 17, hit half-dozen fours and five fours.

Looking to revive his season after recently being cleared of an illegal bowling action, Narine was positive from the start and reached his fourth IPL century in style in the 15th over when he drove off-spinner Ravi Ashwin to the cover boundary and then clipped a couple to deep square.

He eventually perished in the 17th over, holing out to square leg off after being cramped by a short ball from South African fast bowler Kagiso Rabada (2-33).

Captain Shreyas Iyer then top-scored with 47 while Rishabh Pant chipped in with 27 in a 63-run, third-wicket partnership; but once they were separated Delhi lost five wickets for 36 runs in the space of 27 deliveries to fall away badly.

In Dubai, Kings XI continued their surge with a 12-run victory over Jason Holder's Sunrisers Hyderabad in a low-scoring contest.

Asked to bat first, Kings XI struggled to 126 for seven off their 20 overs, with left-hander Pooran top-scoring with an invaluable unbeaten 32 off 28 balls.

Captain KL Rahul made 27 in a 37-run opening stand with Mandeep Singh (17) before adding a further 29 for the second wicket with veteran West Indies left-hander Chris Gayle, whose run-a-ball 20 included two fours and a six.

Once Gayle holed out in the deep off seamer Holder (2-27) at the halfway stage, six wickets tumbled for 44 runs off 51 deliveries and it was left to number four Pooran to farm the strike and eke out critical runs at the end.

In reply, Sunrisers looked to be storming to victory at 56 without loss in the seventh over before Jordan (3-17) and 21-year-old left-arm seamer Arshdeep Singh (3-23) intervened to decimate the innings for 114 in the final over.

Australian opener David Warner, Sunrisers' skipper, top-scored with 35 from 20 balls while Vijay Shankar got 26, but Sunrisers lost seven wickets for 14 runs in a stunning collapse.

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