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Russell fifty in vain, Pooran falls for third 'duck'

Thursday, April 22, 2021

MUMBAI, India (CMC) — All-rounder Andre Russell lashed a pulsating 21-ball half-century, but the woes of his West Indies teammate Nicholas Pooran continued with his third 'duck', as both players endured defeat in the Indian Premier League (IPL) yesterday.

At the Wankhede Stadium here, the big-hitting Russell plundered 54 from 22 deliveries as Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) came up short by 18 runs in their pursuit of an imposing 221 for victory against Chennai Super Kings (CSK), who were missing veteran West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo.

Australian Pat Cummins, known more for his fast bowling, belted 66 off 34 balls, while Dinesh Karthik got 40 off 24 deliveries.

Earlier, South African Faf du Plessis top-scored with an unbeaten 95 off 60 balls, in a 115-run opening partnership with Ruturaj Gaikwad (64), to get CSK up to 220 for three off their 20 overs.

Meanwhile, at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, Pooran was run out without facing a delivery as Punjab Kings were dismissed cheaply for 120 with two balls to spare, with veteran Windies left-hander Chris Gayle also failing with 15.

In reply, England's Jonny Bairstow stroked an unbeaten 63 off 56 deliveries to see Sunrisers Hyderabad — without West Indies all-rounder Jason Holder — to a straightforward nine-wicket win with eight balls remaining.

CSK's victory pushed them top of the eight-team league with six points while KKR slumped to three from bottom on two points, with three defeats in four games.

For Sunrisers, the victory was their first of the campaign leaving them fifth, with Kings rock bottom on two points from their third loss.

Sent in, Du Plessis struck nine fours and four sixes, following up his century-stand with Gaikwad by adding 50 for the second wicket with Moeen Ali (25) and a further 36 for the third with Captain MS Dhoni (17).

Russell removed Dhoni in the 19th to end with one for 27 from an expensive two-over spell while embattled West Indies off-spinner Sunil Narine ended with one for 34 from four overs, in his first game of the new campaign.

Fast bowler Deepak Chahar (4-29) then ripped through the innings to reduce KKR to 31 for five in the sixth over before Russell arrived to lead a devastating assault, blasting three fours and half-dozen sixes in an 81-run, sixth wicket stand with Karthik.

In the 10th over of the innings from pacer Shardul Thakur which gushed 24 runs, the Jamaican clobbered three massive sixes before clearing the ropes at long off in the next over with left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja to reach his 23rd half-century in T20s.

He was dismissed in the following over, however, off the next ball he faced, bowled by left-arm seamer Sam Curran offering no shot.

Cummins' counter-attack, comprising four fours and half-dozen sixes, then threatened as he put on 34 for the seventh wicket with Karthik, 30 for the eighth with Kamlesh Nagarkoti (0) and 34 for the ninth with Varun Chakravarthy (0).

In Chennai, Pooran somehow managed his third 'duck' in four innings, run out at the striker's end in a misjudgement over a sharp single in the eighth over with Gayle, who followed in the next over, lbw to Afghan leg-spinner Rashid Khan.

Bairstow then punched three fours and three sixes, putting on 73 for the first wicket with Captain David Warner (37) and 48 in an unbroken second-wicket partnership with Kane Williamson (16 not out) to see Sunrisers home.