Kolkata Knight Riders (177/6) got their 2018 Indian Premier League campaign off to a winning start on Sunday, beating Royal Challengers Bangalore (176/7) by four wickets (with seven balls remaining).
The hosts opted to bowl first after winning the toss and easily chased down their target, powered by a half-century from Sunil Narine.
With the win, Kolkata also took the top spot in the current IPL standings.
IPL Standings (Team, Played, Won, Points, Net Run Rate)
Kolkata Knight Riders, 1, 1, 2, +0.598
Kings XI Punjab, 1, 1, 2, +0.567
Chennai Super Kings, 1, 1, 2, +0.271
Rajasthan Royals, 0, 0, 0
Sunrisers Hyderabad, 0, 0, 0
Mumbai Indians, 1, 0, 0, -0.271
Delhi Daredevils, 1, 0, 0, -0.567
Royal Challengers Bangalore, 1, 0, 0; –0.598
Monday, April 9, 3:30 p.m. BST: Sunrisers Hyderabad vs. Rajasthan Royals
Tuesday, April 10, 3:30 p.m. BST: Chennai Super Kings vs. Kolkata Knight Riders
Wednesday, April 11, 3:30 p.m. BST: Rajasthan Royals vs. Delhi Daredevils
For the full IPL schedule, click here.
Singh Cameo Leads Bangalore to 176/7
Kolkata won the toss and elected to bowl, knowing chasing teams were always at a major advantage at Eden Gardens last year.
They got Quinton de Kock early and limited Virat Kohli to 31 from 33, but Bangalore sped things up and finished strongly. AB de Villiers scored 44 from 23, with five sixes, and a late surge from Mandeep Singh―37 from 18―pushed the total to 176.
Per cricket writer Boria Majumdar, it was a good score, given the circumstances:
Boria Majumdar @BoriaMajumdar
Reasonable score @RCBTweets innings belonged to Nitish Rana of @KKRiders and Mandeep Singh. That’s the beauty of the @IPL Start key for KKR.
Nitish Rana took two wickets in a single over, giving up 11 runs.
West Indies star Narine got the chase off to a great start with a half-century, scoring 50 from 19 for a strike rate of 263.15. He would find nine boundaries in total before he was bowled by Umesh Yadav in the sixth over.
Per Broken Cricket, Narine made history with his good outing:
Broken Cricket @BrokenCricket
Sunil Narine becomes first player to score half century less than 17 balls twice in IPL history and both came against RCB….
Steady Chase for Kolkata
Knight Riders didn’t push too hard in the chase, slowing down in the middle overs and patiently working their knock. Rana (34 from 25) and Dinesh Karthik (35 not out) did most of the damage, and the chase was completed with a full over left to play with.
Sunrisers and Royals will open their campaigns on Monday. Knight Riders will be in action again on Tuesday, as they take on Super Kings, and Royal Challengers won’t feature until Friday, when they face Kings XI.