Kolkata Knight Riders beat Chennai Super Kings by 6 wickets

Kolkata Knight Riders began their IPL 2022 campaign with a strong win on Saturday

Kolkata Knight Riders recorded their first win of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 tournament on Saturday when they defeated defending champions Chennai Super Kings by a margin of 6 wickets in the first match of the season played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

After restricting Chennai Super Kings to moderate total of 131/5 in their 20 overs, Kolkata Knight Riders were bolstered by a crucial knock  from Ajinkya Rahane (44) at the top order, while other batsmen such as Venkatesh Iyer (16), Nitish Rana (21), KKR captain Shreyas Iyer (20 not out) and Sam Billings (25). Kolkata Knight Riders eventually finished at 133/4 from 18.3 overs, thus winning by 6 wickets and 1.3 overs to spare.

Kolkata Knight Riders fast bowlers Umesh Yadav, Shivam Mavi and Andre Russell were impressive at the start of the innings. Umesh Yadav dismissed both the Chennai Super Kings openers Ruturaj Gaikwad (0) and Devon Conway (3) to set the ball rolling for their side.

While both Mavi and Russell were punished by CSK batsmen Dhoni and Jadeja towards the end of the innings, Umesh Yadav was impressive in his spell of 4-0-20-2. KKR spinners Varun Chakravarthy and Sunil Narine both bowled tight spells which kept a leash on the opposition batsmen. Chakravarthy returned with figures of 4-0-23-1, dismissing Uthappa in the process whereas Narine remained wicketless, returning with 4-0-15-0.

For Chennai super Kings, MS Dhoni, who was playing in his first match as non-captain of the team since the beginning of IPL, scored a brilliant 50 not out from 38 balls with the help of 7 boundaries and a six whereas senior batsman Robin Uthappa showed aggressive intent making 28 from 21 balls with the help of 2 boundaries and as many sixes.

The new Chennai Super Kings captain Ravindra Jadeja also played a handy knock, scoring 26 not out from 28 balls with the help of a six while adding 70 crucial runs with Dhoni for the sixth wicket.

Chennai Super Kings batsmen were unable to stitch partnerships at the top and middle-order, which was the biggest reason why they lost the contest on Saturday night. It was Dhoni and Jadeja who bailed the team out of trouble with a 70-run stand for the sixth wicket which came from only 56 balls.

For KKR, playing his first match, Rahane scored a vital 44 at the top of the order which came from 34 balls and included 6 boundaries and a six. Billings was also impressive towards the end of the innings making the second highest score for his side, falling for a 22-ball 25 which included one six and a four.

Chennai Super Kings will now look to bounce back in their next match which will be on March 31 at the Brabourne Stadium against Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), whereas the Knight Riders will be seen in action against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on March 30 at the DY Patil Stadium.