Ruturaj Gaikwad's magnificent maiden Twenty20 century was in vain as Rajasthan Royals boosted their Indian Premier League play-off hopes with a seven-wicket win over leaders Chennai Super Kings.

Gaikwad replaced KL Rahul as the leading run-scorer in the 2021 tournament, hitting a six off the final ball of CSK's innings to finish unbeaten on 101 off 60 balls.

The opener struck five sixes in a sensational knock, with Ravindra Jadeja scoring a rapid 32 not out in the Super Kings' 189-4 at Zayed Cricket Stadium on Saturday.

Rahul Tewatia took 3-39 but it was a tough day for the Royals bowlers, Mustafizur Rahman going for 51 off his wicket-less four overs.

A big run chase was no problem for the Royals, though, as they cruised to a what could be a vital win with 15 balls to spare in an Abu Dhabi run-fest.

Shivam Dube (64no from 42) struck a brilliant maiden IPL half-century after Yashasvi Jaiswal made 50 from just 21 balls, with Josh Hazlewood (0-54) and Sam Curran (0-55) given the treatment.

Victory for the Royals leaves them in sixth place with two games of the regular season to play, behind Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab Kings on net run-rate.

CSK are already assured of a play-off place but are not guaranteed a top-two finish after their four-game winning run came to an end in MS Dhoni's 200th match as an IPL captain.

Gaikwad takes Royals to all parts

The Rajasthan bowlers were taken to all parts by an inspired Gaikwad, who set the tone by hitting the first ball of the match from Akash Singh for four. 

He brought up a seventh IPL half-century off 43 balls and then cut loose, taking 71 off 30 deliveries and reaching three figures by launching Mustafizur for a huge six.

Gaikwad has 19 runs more than Rahul in the battle for the orange cap, having found the rope nine times to go with his five sixes in a breathtaking innings.

Dube and Jaiswal stun CSK

It was the turn of the CSK bowlers to suffer as Jaiswal and Evin Lewis (27 off 12) made a blistering start to the run chase, putting on 77 in 5.2 overs.

Teenager Jaiswal had his half-century off only 19 balls, striking Hazlewood for two sixes in a fifth over that cost 22 runs before falling to KM Asif to leave the Super Kings on 81-2.

Dube then came to the fore in a stand of 89 with captain Sanju Samson (28), bringing up a maiden fifty from 31 deliveries in a knock that included four sixes, and debutant Glenn Phillips hit the winning run to end the Royals' run of three consecutive defeats.

Shreyas Iyer nudged Delhi Capitals to a four-wicket victory over Mumbai Indians to leave the defending Indian Premier League champions in danger of missing out on the play-offs.

Avesh Khan (3-15) and Axar Patel (3-21) limited Mumbai - who are sixth with two matches to play - to 129-8 as the holders lost wickets at regular intervals.

Anrich Nortje also picked up 1-19 from his four-over allocation and, despite Suryakumar Yadav's 33, Rishabh Pant's side looked like the firm favourites at the halfway point in Sharjah on Saturday.

Nathan Coulter-Nile dismissed fellow Australian Steve Smith (nine) with his first delivery to leave the Capitals teetering at 30-3 after openers Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw were also dismissed cheaply.

Pant (26) followed to off-spinner Jayant Yadav to leave Delhi 57-4 but Iyer and Shimron Hetmyer (15) offered resistance to drag their side up to 93-6 before the latter fell to Jasprit Bumrah's deceiving slower ball.

Ravichandran Ashwin (20) then joined Iyer, who finished unbeaten on 33, to secure victory for second-placed Delhi with five balls to spare and leave the Indians under serious threat of failing to reach the play-offs.

Avesh torments Indians

Avesh toyed with the Mumbai line-up as he delivered a mix of slower balls and inswinging yorkers to secure his three dismissals.

The seamer impressively dismissed the dangerous finisher Hardik Pandya in the penultimate over, while also removing Coulter-Nile after he had claimed the big scalp of Rohit Sharma in his first over.

Ashwin final-over gamble fails

Pant gambled by holding back Ashwin to the final over of Mumbai's innings. The off-spinner dismissed Jayant Yadav but conceded 13 from his final six deliveries as he ended with 1-41 from his four overs.

However, Ashwin made up for it with the bat as he sealed the win with a six off Krunal Pandya's first ball of the last over.

Kolkata Knight Riders captain Eoin Morgan insists the franchise is monitoring the fitness of West Indies star Andre Russell on a day-by-day basic but remains unsure of exactly when the player will return to action.

The bit-hitting all-rounder was forced to leave the field after making a good save on the mid-wicket boundary and jumped himself off the field as soon as he threw back the ball.  The 33-year-old did not feature for the team against the Dehli Capitals, or Friday’s encounter against the Punjab Kings XI.

Despite Russell missing the second game in a row, Morgan did not shed any more light on the player’s current injury status.

“Lockie and Russell are being monitored day by day. They have to rehab extremely well in order to be fit,” Morgan said.

Earlier, David Hussey, KKR’s team mentor, had described Russell’s injury as a hamstring injury but expressed hope that the player could return to the line-up soon,

“He said he felt something pop in his leg, his hamstring. We’ve got the best medical staff in the business so they’ll tend to him and hopefully, it’s nothing too serious, because he’s a key part of our team,” Hussey said.

In addition to the Knight Riders, the West Indies will also be closely monitoring the situation, with the player expected to line up for the World T20 later this month.

 

 

Punjab Kings emerged triumphant after a dramatic finish to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by five wickets and keep their Indian Premier League play-off hopes alive.

Chasing 166 to win, captain KL Rahul (67 runs from 55 balls) took Punjab to the brink of a vital victory only to fall in the final over, leaving them needing four from as many balls.

Shahrukh Khan (22 from nine) then looked like he had been caught in the deep off the next delivery, only for Rahul Tripathi to drop the ball over the boundary for a six, ending the contest.

That thrilling finale came after a run chase that Punjab had long looked to have under control, with Mayank Agarwal (40 from 27) also making a key contribution.

KKR had earlier managed 165-7 after being put in to bat, with Venkatesh Iyer scoring 67 off 49 to give his side a chance.

Instead, Punjab's successful chase means they join KKR and Mumbai Indians on 10 points in a competitive battle to achieve a top-four place.

No Gayle, no problem for Kings

Chris Gayle leaving the IPL due to bubble fatigue was a blow for the Kings, but they were still able to get the win they desperately needed here.

Rahul, who had two maximums, anchored the innings and would have been disappointed not to have finished the chase himself. Still, he can reflect on a job well done while sitting as the competition's leading run scorer with 489, this being his fifth fifty in 11 matches.

KKR fail to build on Iyer platform

With Andre Russell out injured, it was Iyer who did the damage with the bat for KKR, his 72-run partnership with Tripathi for the second wicket setting an impressive platform.

However, KKR did not take full advantage and, having reached 120-2, they struggled. After Iyer's dismissal, Nitish Rana (31 off 18) was the only batter able to accelerate the rate.

Chennai Super Kings qualified for the Indian Premier League play-offs thanks to a six-wicket victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad, who are eliminated from contention.

Hyderabad had won their previous outing, beating Rajasthan Royals by seven wickets to snap a five-game losing run in the competition, but this was another poor performance during a disappointing season for the franchise.

They mustered just 134-7 from their 20 overs, with only Wriddhiman Saha managing more than 18 runs in a sub-par showing with the bat in Sharjah.

However, the Sunrisers still ran their opponents close in the end, Chennai left needing 16 off the final two overs despite strong showings from opening duo Ruturaj Gaikwad (45) and Faf du Plessis (41). 

However, 40-year-old MS Dhoni rolled back the years to finish the game in style, smashing a six to secure the victory with two balls to spare.

Super Kings bolster impressive record

Chennai have now won eight of their last 10 matches against the Sunrisers. This latest success was built on a solid team bowling performance, one which was led by Australia fast bowler Josh Hazlewood (3-24).

Saha show not quite enough

While he was on the losing side, Saha certainly cannot be blamed for the defeat. He made nearly a third of Hyderabad's runs on his own as he managed 44 from 46 deliveries, including a pair of sixes, but received little support from the rest of the top order.

At 34-years-old, West Indies big-hitter Kieron Pollard admits these days there is great satisfaction in showing younger players he has plenty left in the tank, despite the realization that time is slowly catching up to him.

On Monday, the West Indian captain became the first player in history to take 300 wickets and 10,000 runs in T20s, after taking two wickets and making 15 runs for Indian Premier League team Mumbai Indians.

Over an outstanding career, the all-rounder is now second behind Chris Gayle on the all-time list with 11,217 runs and 8th on the all-time bowling list in terms of wickets taken.  Perhaps fitting Gayle was among one of the wickets he claimed on the way to the special milestone.  While proud of what he has accomplished in the sport, the dynamic player is keenly aware of a new generation of cricketers eager to make their own mark on the sport.

“Age is catching up with me because (there are) young guys in the dressing room, so I have to continue to show them that, ‘listen, I still got it,” Pollard said after the game.

“So, most of the time, it’s just to show these young guys what I can do,” he added.

“For me, you are just supposed to do what the team requires. As an individual, I know what I can do in all the facets of the game, and whenever I get the opportunity just try to do my best.”

Glenn Maxwell scored his 10th Indian Premier League fifty as Royal Challengers Bangalore cruised to a seven-wicket victory over Rajasthan Royals.

Australia star Maxwell scored 50 not out from 30 deliveries as RCB comfortably chased down their target of 150 with 17 balls to spare, finishing on 153-3.

Maxwell put on 69 with wicketkeeper Srikar Bharat (44), a partnership that ended any doubt over the outcome of the match after a brief hiccup when captain Virat Kohli (25) was run out.

Having been put in to bat by Kohli, Rajasthan had earlier looked like they were cruising to a huge total when they reached 100-1 after 11 overs, but the dismissal of opener Evin Lewis - who had smashed 58 runs off 37 balls - sparked a collapse to 149-9.

Yuzvendra Chahal (2-18) and Shahbaz Ahmed (2-10) impressed, with their combined six overs producing four wickets at an economy rate of 4.67, while debutant George Garton (1-30) was the man to remove Lewis.

Maxwell then racked up six fours and a sole maximum in an easy run chase for RCB, with Mustafizur Rahman (2-20) the only Rajasthan bowler to offer up any meaningful resistance.

More misery for Rajasthan against RCB

Rajasthan Royals have now lost their last four matches against RCB, extending what was already their longest active losing streak against a single opponent in the IPL.

With three straight losses, a playoff berth is starting to look like a tough ask for Rajasthan in contrast to RCB, who sit comfortably in third place after responding to a three-game losing run with two consecutive victories, Maxwell getting a fifty in both triumphs.

Fine season for Harshal continues

Harshal Patel (3-34) was already the leader in the purple cap race with 23 wickets coming into the match, having become only the fourth RCB player in IPL history to record a hat-trick last time out against Mumbai Indians.

It looked like he was in for a frustrating outing here but his persistence paid off as he claimed three wickets in the last over of a Rajasthan innings that went downhill rapidly, extending his advantage atop the standings.

Mumbai Indians put an end to a three-game losing streak to boost their play-off hopes in the Indian Premier League, beating Punjab Kings by six wickets. 

Saurabh Tiwary made 45 and Hardik Pandya hit an unbeaten 40 as the reigning champions overhauled their opponents' score of 135-6 with an over to spare on Tuesday. 

Looking to beat Mumbai for a third time in a row – a feat they had not managed since a run between the 2008-09 seasons – Punjab Kings simply failed to fire with the bat. They appeared to be making solid progress when their opening pair reached 36 without loss, only to then lose four wickets for the addition of just 12 runs.

Kieron Pollard claimed two in one over, including dismissing fellow West Indian Chris Gayle for one. Captain KL Rahul followed soon after, hitting a slower bouncer straight to Jasprit Bumrah at short fine leg to depart for 21. 

Aiden Markram led a recovery of sorts, finishing as the top scorer in the innings with 42. Deepak Hooda contributed 28 while Harpreet Brar ended up unbeaten on 14, though both struggled to up the run-rate in the closing overs. 

Ravi Bishnoi provided hope for Punjab Kings by dismissing Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav with successive deliveries in the powerplay, but Pollard came out at number six in the order to rush his team to victory, making 15 not out from just seven balls.

 

Bowlers help dethrone Kings 

Mumbai Indians have lost 13 games against Punjab Kings in the history of the IPL, the joint-most for the franchise against any rival in the tournament. 

However, they came out on top this time thanks mainly to their bowling attack. Krunal Pandya and Bumrah both claimed 1-24, while Nathan Coulter-Nile's four-over stint conceded just 19 runs. 

All-round excellence in Abu Dhabi 

Pollard may be better known for his big-hitting exploits with the bat, but the all-rounder has now reached the milestone of 300 wickets in Twenty20 cricket, meaning he becomes the first player to achieve both that feat and also score 10,000 runs in the format.

He dismissed Gayle for just the second time in T20 action, tempting the left-hander to have a go at a slower delivery that only ended up in the safe hands of Hardik Pandya. 

Sunrisers Hyderabad put an end to a five-match losing streak in the Indian Premier League, recording an emphatic seven-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals on Monday. 

Captain Sanju Samson made 82 for the Royals, yet their total of 164-5 was no problem for a Sunrisers team out who saw Jason Roy star at the top of the order. 

The England batsman – selected ahead of the out-of-sorts David Warner – made 60 from 42 deliveries on his debut for the franchise, in the process giving their run chase a solid start. 

Kane Williamson made sure there were few alarms with an unbeaten half-century, the Sunrisers captain helping reach the victory target with nine balls to spare. 

Abhishek Sharma ended up on 21 not out as the Royals missed out on doing the double over their opponents for the first time in the round-robin stage of an IPL season. 

Sunrisers avoid unwanted record

Despite the impressive triumph, Hyderabad remain bottom of the table. Still, they at least avoided losing six in a row for the first time ever in the competition's history. 

Roy certainly made the most of his opportunity, hitting a solitary six and eight fours. While both he and Priyam Garg, out for a first-ball duck, fell in quick succession, Williamson's unbeaten 51 saw the Sunrisers coast home. 

Samson strong again as he reaches milestone

Samson sure likes playing the Sunrisers. His 57-ball knock saw him become the highest scorer against them, while he also moved past 3,000 IPL runs in his career. 

Yashasvi Jaiswal made 36 and Mahipal Lomror contributed an unbeaten 29 with the bat for Rajasthan, though a second successive defeat damages their hopes of making the play-offs. 

Glenn Maxwell starred with bat and ball and Harshal Patel took a hat-trick as Royal Challengers Bangalore defeated Mumbai Indians by 54 runs in Sunday's Indian Premier League clash.

RCB's captain Virat Kohil, who is set to stand down at the end of the season, laid the foundations with 51 before Srikar Bharat (32) and Maxwell (56) led their side to 165 from their 20 overs.

It could have been far more, however, if it was not for death-bowling pair Jasprit Bumrah (3-36) and Trent Boult (1-17), who combined well to limit Kohli's side to what seemed like a par score before Bangalore's bowlers fought back excellently.

Rohit Sharma (43) and Quinton de Kock (24) looked to have continued the momentum by putting on 56 inside the powerplay, but the latter fell to Yuzendra Chahal (3-11) before the India opener was removed by Maxwell.

Ishan Kishan and Krunal Pandya quickly followed to the same spinning pair, leaving Mumbai 93-4 with seven overs to go.

Patel inflicted further misery as he ran through the middle and lower-order batters, removing Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya and Rahul Chahar to secure a memorable hat-trick as Mumbai were bowled out for just 111 with 11 balls remaining.

Brilliant Bumrah and Boult

Bumrah removed two of Bangalore's dangermen in Maxwell and AB de Villiers in the space of two balls to kick-start a miserly death-bowling spell, which ultimately proved in vain.

The India quick would eventually finish with an economy of nine as he managed dot balls with a third of his deliveries, while Boult produced four more dots and finished impressively with an economy of just over four.

King Kohli's captaincy decisions pay off

Kohli seemed to get every decision right. Mohammed Siraj ran straight to Kohli following his dismissal of Suryakumar Yadav, suggesting a plan between the pair had come off before another bowling change paid off as well.

Dan Christian, despite his first over going for 15, was brought back by Kohli and his following set of six went for just a run a ball as every decision Kohli made seemed to turn to gold, with RCB limiting Mumbai throughout the middle overs to coast to a comfortable win.

Ravindra Jadeja was the hero as Chennai Super Kings pinched a dramatic two-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League.

Kolkata mustered 171-6 from their 20-over allocation and looked heavy favourites, with MS Dhoni's Super Kings needing 24 off the final 10 balls.

However, Jadeja (22) smashed 20 off Prasidh Krishna's final four balls in the penultimate over, with number 10 Deepak Chahar (one not out) then holding his nerve to hit the winning run off the final ball of the match.

Shardul Thakur and Josh Hazlewood took two wickets apiece, and Jadeja picked up 1-21, but Eoin Morgan's Knight Riders still posted a handy total, with Rahul Tripathi (45) and Nitish Rana (37) providing much of the impetus.

Dinesh Karthik played an important hand with a late 26 from just 11 deliveries, but that did not seem to matter as Chennai made a dashing start to their reply, openers Faf du Plessis and Ruturaj Gaikwad making 43 and 40 respectively.

Once they both fell, Sunil Narine and the Knight Riders attack began to make an impact with the ball as the Super Kings collapsed from 102-1 to 142-6, despite Moeen Ali making 32.

Yet Jadeja then came up with the late intervention that earned him man-of-the-match honours, launching two sixes before immediately adding a pair of fours in the 19th-over burst.

Jadeja fell to the penultimate ball of the contest in Abu Dhabi, pinned lbw by Narine, but Chahar came up with the single required to give Chennai the win.

Nervy Narine

Narine's first two overs were blasted for 25, but the off-spinner led the Knight Riders' recovery as he removed Ambati Rayudu, Sam Curran and Jadeja.

He kept his team in the match all the way to the final ball, after Super Kings' top three earlier piled on the runs, but Jadeja's big-hitting had made it too much of a tall order.

More needed from Morgan?

Morgan struggled for fluidity with the bat, and he may feel his slow scoring ultimately cost his side as they were pipped on the final ball.

The England captain failed to capitalise on Tripathi's top-order impetus as he limped to just eight off 14 balls before being removed by Hazlewood in the ninth over with the score at 70-3.

Punjab Kings propelled themselves back into Indian Premier League play-off contention by beating bottom side Sunrisers Hyderabad by five runs on Saturday.

In a low-scoring match between the IPL's bottom two sides, Jason Holder's 47 not out was not enough for the Sunrisers to claim just a second win of the season.

Aiden Markram (27) top scored for Punjab, with captain KL Rahul (21) the only other player to knock off over 20 runs.

Holder was crucial to keeping Punjab to 125-7, as he took three wickets for 19 runs from his four overs, yet Mohammed Shami took the huge wickets of David Warner and Kane Williamson in his first two overs to deal the Sunrisers a blow.

The Sunrisers were reduced to just 20 runs in the powerplay, the lowest total in their IPL history, and despite Holder's unbeaten stand, which included five sixes, they did not have enough to get over the line.

Punjab's win takes them onto eight points, level with three other teams all hunting a play-off spot.

Holder's heroics not enough

There was no doubting who the star of the show was on Saturday, with West Indies international Holder brilliant with both the bat and ball. Yet his efforts proved fruitless, with Nathan Ellis managing to keep him at bay in the final over. 

"It is a tough loss. We left a little bit too much in the back end to do. That's how the game plays. We were behind the eight ball. I just wanted to give myself a chance and strike well," said Holder.

Shami and Bishnoi strike

The Sunrisers' confidence was knocked early by Shami (2-14), as he dismissed Warner (2) and Williamson (1) to stifle the chase before it had even got started.

Ravi Bishnoi then added three wickets for just 24 runs to apply further pressure, skittling through Hyderabad's middle order.

Delhi Capitals returned to the top of the Indian Premier League on Saturday after beating Rajasthan Royals by 33 runs in Abu Dhabi.

Shreyas Iyer (43) and Shimron Hetmyer (28) helped Rishabh Pant's men to 154-6 before Anrich Nortje (2-18) led a disciplined bowling effort to stifle the chase.

After losing Liam Livingstone and David Miller in the powerplay thanks to slick fielding from Pant, the brilliance of the unbeaten Sanju Samson (70 not out) was not enough to keep the Royals' hopes alive.

Mahipal Lomror (19) was the only other batsman to reach double figures against a strong Capitals attack, Nortje and Ravichandran Ashwin (1-20) taking three wickets between them – as many boundaries as they allowed throughout.

After the Capitals lost the toss, Shikhar Dhawan was skittled by Kartik Tyagi after facing just eight balls, with Prithvi Shaw following in the next over, but there were no further slip-ups.

Hetmyer's 28 off 16 deliveries built on the good work of Iyer and Pant before a late flourish from Lalit Yadav (14) helped set a formidable target.

Once the Royals lost three wickets in the first five overs, the result seemed a formality, despite the best efforts of Samson, who hit eight fours and a six off 53 balls.

The Capitals are back on top of the table, two points above Chennai Super Kings ahead of their clash with Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday.

'One of the best'

Delhi are now on a run of six wins in seven IPL games against the Royals, who are down in sixth in the standings but level on points with the KKR in fourth.

"If not the best, it is one of the best," Pant said of his attack after more exemplary bowling. "But we like to take it as one match at a time. There's a fair bit of planning, as a team we plan according to the batters, and execute according to those plans."

Little joy for Samson

While he did not get the support he needed at the other end, Samson did at least reach the milestone of 100 sixes for the Royals in the IPL.

He is the second batsman to reach that tally for the franchise, after Shane Watson (109).

Dwayne Bravo and Ruturaj Gaikwad starred as Chennai Super Kings returned to the top of the Indian Premier League with a six-wicket defeat of Royal Challengers Bangalore.

RCB slumped to a nine-wicket loss at the hands of Kolkata Knight Riders after they were bowled out for only 92 on Monday in their first game since the tournament resumed.

They looked set to post an imposing total at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Friday after Devdutt Padikkal (70 off 50 balls) and captain Virat Kohli (53 from 41) put on 111 for the first wicket, but could only finish with 156-6.

Bravo (3-24) and Shardul Thakur (2-29) put the brakes on as Kohli's third-placed side lost their way after the start had been delayed due to a sandstorm.

An opening stand of 71 from 8.2 overs between the in-form Gaikwad (38 off 26) and Faf du Plessis (31 from 26) set CSK on their way to a seventh win in nine matches.

Ambati Rayudu (32) and Moeen Ali (23) also chipped in before vastly experienced duo Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni got the Super Kings home with 11 balls to spare, moving them above Delhi Capitals on net run-rate.

 

OPENERS LAY RCB FOUNDATIONS

The dangerous Padikkal and Kohli got RCB off to a great start after they were put in by MS Dhoni, taking 55 off the powerplay.

Padikkal was the first to raise his bat, bringing up his sixth IPL half-century by dispatching Deepak Chahar for four, and Kohli struck Ravindra Jadeja to the boundary to reach his fifty soon after.

RCB lost their way after Kohli was removed by Bravo in the 14th over, with Padikkal - who struck three sixes - falling straight after Shardul Thakur got rid of AB de Villiers in the South Africa legend's 150th match for just 12.

 

GAIKWAD IN GREAT NICK

Gaikwad made a brilliant unbeaten 88 in CSK's victory over defending champions Mumbai Indians and the opener maintained his form five days later.

The 24-year-old and Du Plessis got the Super Kings ahead of the rate in a great start to the run chase, the South Africa batsman clearing the ropes twice and Gaikwad hitting one six.

Both batsman fell in consecutive overs, but CSK kept wickets in hand and stayed ahead of the rate, with Raina and Dhoni finished off the job.

Kolkata Knight Riders recorded only their second win in the past 14 Indian Premier League meetings with Mumbai Indians in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.

Eoin Morgan's side swept to an impressive seven-wicket victory after Mumbai had made a strong start through Rohit Sharma (33) and Quinton de Kock (55), having been put in to bat.

The Knight Riders made the challenge of chasing 156 look all too easy, Rahul Tripathi (74) leading the way as they reached 159-3 with 29 balls to spare.

An opening stand of 78 was finally broken when Sunil Narine (1-20) accounted for Rohit before Suryakumar Yadav went for the loss of just five runs.

De Kock's solid 55 ended when he mishit the ball straight to Narine as Prasidh Krishna got his second wicket.

Kieron Pollard (21) and Krunal Pandya (12) helped to stretch the Indians' score to 155-6, and Kolkata's chase looked in a little danger after Shubman Gill was skittled for 13 by Jasprit Bumrah (2-35).

It proved a mere blip during an impeccable innings, though, as Venkatesh Iyer and Tripathi each reached stunning half-centuries while Morgan managed seven off eight balls before being caught by Trent Boult at the ropes.

A commanding victory was secured in style, Nitish Rana reverse sweeping for four as the Knight Riders reached their target with almost five full overs left.

TRIPATHI LEADS MASTERCLASS

It would be easy to blame the Mumbai attack for the ease with which their score was hunted down, Kolkata managing 22 boundaries including eight maximums from only 15.1 overs.

However, praise has to go to the batsmen – and Tripathi in particular – for some immaculate strokes as they finished with a run rate of 10.48.

KNIGHT RIDERS GALLOPING TO PLAY-OFFS

Kolkata are into fourth in the table after managing just a seventh win over the Indians in 29 IPL matches.

With three victories from four, they look to be finding form at a critical moment in the competition.

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