Kolkata Knight Riders star Chris Lynn heaped praise on his fellow opener Sunil Narine after the duo batted Rajasthan Royals out of an Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 contest at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium on Sunday.
Chasing a modest total of 140, Kolkata Knight Riders were off to a flyer after Narine and Lynn took the Rajasthan Royals bowlers to the cleaners. The home side were made to work hard for their runs on what seemed to be a sluggish wicket in Jaipur.
Steve Smith was the only bright spot in Royals’ batting performance as none of the other batsmen, including big guns Ajinkya Rahane and Ben Stokes, were able to get going.
However, Narine and Lynn batted as if the the Knight Riders’ chase was happening on a different surface. Narine hit a six and four boundaries in Krishnappa Gowtham’s first over as KKR raced to 32 for 0 in 2 overs.
The visitors were 65 for 0 at the end of the powerplay as Narine and Lynn brought up their highest opening stand of IPL 2019 with some stunning shot-making.
Narine missed out on a fifty when he was dismissed on 47 (in 25 balls) but the two KKR openers had already done the damage by putting on 91 in just 51 balls.
Lynn got out just after getting to his seventh IPL fifty but Robin Uthappa (26 off 16) made sure KKR got past the finish line without further hiccups.
“Unbelievable (batting from Narine). He has done it for a couple of years now. We don’t talk too much. Just keep it simple. I am traditionally a slow starter. It is a long tournament, we are building nicely with important wins,” Lynn told Star Sports after KKR’s 8-wicket win.
Clinical effort: Dinesh Karthik elated after KKR’s 8-wicket win
Meanwhile, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Dinesh Karthik praised the collective effort of his men in their table-topping win in Jaipur.
KKR are now No. 1 on the points table with four wins from five matches and a better Net Run Rate than second-placed Chennai Super Kings.
“It was a pretty clinical effort, the bowlers bowled well and the batsmen backed it up well too. In India you get to play on a lot of slow surfaces and you need to adapt to them. We need to improve in a few situations, but that’s always the case,” Karthik said.
Despite Lynn and Narine putting on a big-hitting show, pacer Harry Gurney walked away with the Man of the Match on his IPL debut.
The seasoned English pacer finished with figures of 2 for 25 after getting the wickets of Jos Buttler and Rahul Tripathi.
“It was a pitch that suited my cutter options, so a nice one to make my debut on. I work hard on my variations and on my yorker and it is nice to have them in tough situations, although I didn’t use it much tonight,” Gurney said.
Having won two in two, KKR will travel to Chennai to take on the Super Kings on Tuesday at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, which has been MS Dhoni-led side’s fortress so far.