Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) captain Shreyas Iyer was proud of the team’s performance despite a three-wicket loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The two-time champions led the game in the final while defending a goal of 129 at DY Patil Stadium.
Defending a paltry total, the KKR pacers gave a dazzling start to the double winners. As the bowlers battled hard, compound shots from Sherfane Rutherford, Shahbaz Ahmad and Dinesh Karthik helped RCB cross the line in their second game.
Praising the team’s efforts to stretch the game to the end of the innings, Iyer said during the postgame presentation:
“I really found this match exciting, because before entering the second phase, I just spoke to my boys and told them that this match will define our character and our attitude on the pitch.”
“It doesn’t matter if we defend the total or not, but how we fight it on the pitch is really going to reflect our mentality. I’m really proud of how we played this game and took it to the end. more than.”
RCB’s approach against spin twins KKR arguably decided the match. While Sunil Narine cast a compound spell, his partner Varun Chakravarthy was not on the same page and was unable to control his bowling game.
Explaining the decision to bring Venkatesh Iyer into the attack in the penultimate round of the innings, Shreyas Iyer said:
“Well, it was really tough at that time because I wanted to bring in my best bowlers and get some wickets, but it didn’t work out very well.”
“You know, congratulations to their batsmen, they played very well in the middle and they got out the hardest phase as soon as possible. In the end I decided to go with Venky because he also has a very good bowling at international level and I have to support them, especially at the start of the tournament”,
The all-rounder threw a more composed 19th but conceded a limit on final delivery to make things easier for RCB in the final. Former KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik only needed two deliveries from Andre Russell to complete the job of his new franchise.
“We’re not going to chicken out” – Shreyas Iyer on KKR’s hard-hitting approach
The majority of KKR batters lost their wickets after playing expansive strokes before settling fully into the crease. The hard-hitting word-go approach backfired on a surface that was a bit of a two-beat.
Believing that KKR will stick to their aggressive approach while mending their slump against RCB, Iyer said:
“It felt a bit risky at the start, a bit of a two-pace and the rebound felt weird. We wanted to get a really good start, that’s what we had planned but the execution part was really difficult on our part, we couldn’t don’t do it right. To be honest, we’re going to come back with the same mindset, we’re not going to chicken out or anything like that.”
Of all the KKR hitters, only Andre Russell and Varun Chakravarthy have managed to survive more than 15 deliveries into the crease. The constant drop in wickets did not help their case either as they lacked momentum in the early innings.
Praising Wanindu Hasaranga for his 4-20 winning spell, Iyer concluded:
“He played very well, he got off to a good start after getting my wicket. I was able to read him very well. We decided we were going to play him as an off-spinner, but unfortunately he played a very good line and length and he was getting a bit of help on that wicket as well, so yeah, congratulations to him.
KKR will next face Punjab Kings (PBKS) at Wankhede Stadium on April 1 at Wankhede Stadium, as per the IPL 2022 schedule.