Mumbai, April 24 (IANS) Chris Morris’s four-wicket haul and a composed innings from skipper Sanju Samson (42 not out off 41 balls) helped Rajasthan Royals (RR) seal a six-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in an Indian Premier League match here on Saturday.
The win, secured with seven balls to spare, put RR in sixth place in the points table while KKR were pushed to the bottom.
Morris’s haul, in which he picked power-hitters Andre Russell, Pat Cummins and Dinesh Karthik, helped RR restrict KKR to 133/9 in 20 overs.
RR then chased it with the help of an unbeaten 34-run partnership for fifth wicket between Samson and David Miller (24 off 23 balls).
Though RR opener Jos Buttler failed again, Yashasvi Jaiswal, who came in for Manan Vohra, and Shivam Dube chipped in with identical scores of 22.
Russell, Cummins and Karthik had played explosive innings in the last match against Chennai Super Kings to take their side to 202 from 31/5. But on Saturday, they just couldn’t get going. All three of them were caught while trying to hit the South African over the boundary.
Morris, who was bought for Rs 16.25 crore ahead of this season by RR to become the most expensive player in IPL history, returned with figures of four for 23 in four overs. He was ably supported by left-arm pace bowler Mustafizur Rahman, who took one for 22.
Saurashtra pace bowling duo Jaydev Unadkat and Chetan Sakariya who opened the bowling were also impressive with the senior pro taking 1/25 and the junior 1/31 as KKR could never find their bearings.
Only Rahul Tripathi (36 off 26 balls) and Dinesh Karthik (25 off 24 balls) put up some decent batting performances to help their side get to their eventual total.
Morris’s bowling at the death hurt KKR the most.
At 117/5 and 15 balls to go, KKR had a chance to get to 150 with hard-hitters Russell, Karthik and Cummins still there.
But Morris got rid of Russell and Karthik in one over, his third, and then returned to remove Cummins in the last over.
Earlier in their innings, KKR kept losing wickets at regular intervals and found scoring tough. They were reduced to 61/4 just after 10 overs.
Brief scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 133/9 in 20 overs (R Tripathi 36, D Karthik 25, C Morris 4/23, M Rahman 1/22, J Unadkat 1/25, C Sakariya 1/31) vs Rajasthan Royals 134/4 in 18.5 overs (S Samson 42 not out, D Miller 24 not out, Y Jaiswal 22, S Dube 22, V Chakravarthy 2/32)