Kolkata Knight Riders came out of nowhere in the final stages of the IPL to play some extraordinary cricket. The form of Yusuf Pathan will be a big plus for the KKR in the remaining tournament.
The match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad was one of the best this season. To leave Chennai Super Kings at the third spot and get themselves to the second, which gives them one more chance to make it to the finals, Kolkata needed to score the runs faster so that would take them ahead of CSK in the net run rate.
To make it to the top two spots in the points table, Kolkata needed to achieve the target in 15.2 overs. That would mean a better net run rate than the Chennai Super Kings. The advantage of being at the first or the second spot is that the team does not get eliminated even if they lose in the playoffs.
Kings XI Punjab have already made it to the top. So, it was a fight between Kolkata and Chennai. It was Yusuf Pathan who made this possible.
Having had a poor season with the bat and nothing going the big-hitting batsman’s way, it was time he showed his vintage form. When Yusuf came to the crease, he changed the entire scenario of the match in a matter of a few deliveries only.
The attacking batsman was in full glory as he slammed six after six to bring the target within sight. He reached his half century in only 15 balls that included three fours and five sixes. There was no mercy for the bowlers as even Dale Steyn was taken to the sword. Yusuf was in full control of the match as he rendered the required run rate almost a child’s play.
The bearded batsman who just became a father unleashed breathtaking shots over leg side as anything pitched up was always disappearing in the crowd. As they say fortune favors the brave, so did it happen with Yusuf. He was just inches from being caught behind by the keeper off the bowling of Steyn. However, a hard slash at the ball is what saved him.
Kings XI Punjab were supposed to play the first qualifier today – Tuesday, May 27. However, due to rains and wet outfield, it was impossible to play the match as scheduled today. That’s why it will now be played tomorrow – Wednesday, May 28. The winner will directly reach the finals, to be played on June 1. The losing team will get one more chance to make it to the finals.
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