Kolkata Knight Riders defeat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 21 runs to keep IPL 2023 Playoffs hopes alive


Wednesday witnessed the start of the second half of IPL 2023 as Kolkata Knight Riders broke Royal Challengers Bangalore‘s 2-game winning streak after posting a total of 200 runs in the first innings. The visitors followed it up with a determined bowling effort, restricting RCB to 179-8.

Stand-in captain Virat Kohli won the toss and chose to field. KKR were off to a steady start before Jason Roy exploded into life in the sixth over when Shahbaz Ahmed was introduced to the attack. KKR ended it with 66 runs on the board.

It was Vyshak Vijay Kumar who got the first breakthrough as Narayan Jagadeesan tried to take Kumar on but was caught in the deep by David Willey. Jason Roy followed his opening partner three balls later as the English batter finished with 5 sixes and 4 four scoring 56 runs off just 29 deliveries.

Despite the bright start, KKR found themselves at 88-2 at the halfway mark of the innings. RCB had found a way back into the game, while KKR needed a partnership. Venkatesh Iyer and captain Nitish Rana did exactly that as the captain led the counterpunch from the front and played a brilliant innings of 48 runs off 21 balls. 

KKR lost their captain on the second ball of the 18th over, with 178 runs on the board. Venkatesh Iyer soon followed his captain and was caught over mid-on by Glenn Maxwell in the same over. 

Rinku Singh played a cameo to justify the foundation laid for a big score as KKR finished with 200 runs on the board at the loss of five wickets courtesy of 69 runs being scored in the last five overs.

In the run-chase, things started in fine fashion as Virat Kohli slashed the first delivery of the innings for a boundary. Faf du Plessis looked intent on bringing the attack to KKR. He had already hit two sixes and a four by the end of the second over. The impact substitute lost his wicket to Suyash Sharma scoring 17 runs off 7 balls.

Virat Kohli continued as captain against Nitish Rana’s KKR

Kohli continued to score quick runs at one end despite his team losing both Shahbaz Ahmad and Glenn Maxwell in successive overs. Kohli looked in fine form and started the fifth over with two successive boundaries off Suyash.

Sharma glittered as he caught Shahbaz trapped leg before wicket and Varun Chakravarthy dismissed Maxwell’s wicket as the Australian powerhouse was caught on the boundary by David Wiese.

With RCB struggling at 58-3 after 5.5 overs, Kohli found a dependable partner in Mahipal Lomror and brought up RCB to the 100-run mark in 10.3 overs. Completing his half-century in 33 deliveries, Kohli was looking strong alongside the southpaw before Lomror lost his wicket after a decent 17-ball innings, during which he scored 34 runs. 

Chakravarthy bowled a fuller delivery which attracted the top edge and Lomror was caught by Andre Russell on the mid-wicket boundary before the Carribean all-rounder claimed the big wicket of Kohli, who tried to pull him in the gap in front of the mid-wicket. A brilliant catch by the running Venkatesh Iyer seemed to have won the game for the Knight Riders.

Suyash Prabhudesai, Hasaranga, and Dinesh Karthik were back in the pavilion by the end of the 18th over. David Willey and Vyshak closed the game out as KKR claimed a comfortable 21-run victory.

The Royal Challengers will be looking to return to form in their next game against the Lucknow Super Giants while Rana’s men will take on the Gujarat Titans on Saturday.