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IPL 2023 | Rinku Singh, Nitish Rana Douse CSK as KKR Jumps Back to playoffs Reckoning

image-lhnp23e9Rinku Singh in full flow against CSK (IPLT20.COM)

Kolkata Knight Riders – 147/4 in 18.3 overs [Nitish Rana 57* (44), Rinku Singh 54 (43); Deepak Chahar 3/27 (3)] beat Chennai Super Kings – 144/6 in 20 overs [Shivam Dube 48* (34), Devon Conway 30 (28); Sunil Narine 2/15 (4), Varun Chakravarthy 2/36 (4)] by 6 wickets.

Kolkata Knight Riders upstaged the Chennai Super Kings by six wickets in front of a capacity crowd at M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, the latter’s home base. The win marked KKR’s fourth in their past six outings as they continue to capitalise on their recent success in the business stage of this tournament.

Shivam Dube lifts CSK after top-order failure

In-form CSK openers Ruturaj Gaikwad and Devon Conway failed to convert their confident starts into big scores, as the two batters were removed by Varun Chakravarthy and Shardul Thakur for 17 and 30 respectively.

Chakravarthy later returned to curtail Ajinkya Rahane’s threatening rebellion, while Ambati Rayudu and Moeen Ali were cleaned up by KKR legend Sunil Narine in quick succession.

Shivam Dube at number five unleashed another six-laden masterclass in his 34-ball knock, minting 48 crucial runs for the hosts, all in the final 10 overs of the innings. Ravindra Jadeja listed 20 at less than a run-a-ball while MS Dhoni’s presence at the crease was restricted to just three unbeaten deliveries at the death. CSK eventually formed 144-6, with Dube’s 48* emerging as the biggest contribution behind the effort.

Rana, Rinku negates Chahar threat with identical 50s

CSK’s new-ball speedster Deepak Chahar bowled three overs upfront, and took a wicket in each of them. KKR’s top three were left with no clue in front of Chahar’s sublime opening gambit, as openers Jason Roy, Rahmanullah Gurbaz and number three Venkatesh Iyer combined to score just 22 runs between them.

Thereafter, captain Nitish Rana and IPL cult hero Rinku Singh tactically counterattacked the rest of the CSK bowlers, as hosts suffered an excruciating game-changing hour throughout the subsequent 12 wicketless overs.

Both Rana and Rinku clubbed identical half-centuries, with the latter’s dismissal at 54 ultimately ending their match-winning 99-run stand. Within touching distance of CSK’s total, the visiting skipper drove Tushar Deshpande for an effortless boundary as KKR romped to victory with nine balls still in hand.

The win took KKR to number seven on the IPL 2023 points table, as their 12 points now levels them with Punjab Kings, Rajasthan Royals and RCB in a congested race for a spot in the playoffs. On the other hand, CSK remains at second and are just a win away from sealing a top four spot for good.