‘Lynnsanity’ hit the Indian Premier League (IPL) in the third match of the 10th edition, in Kolkata Knight Riders’ (KKR) crushing 10-wicket win over Gujarat Lions (GL) at Rajkot in a high-scoring contest. Opening the innings with Gautam Gambhir (76 not out), Chris Lynn hammered Gujarat Lions’ bowlers all around the park with brute force, registering the joint fastest fifty in the competition for Kolkata Knight Riders. Gambhir and Lynn added an unbeaten 184 runs for the opening wicket, thus helping Kolkata Knight Riders to register their first win over the Suresh Raina-led side in their third attempt. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Gujarat Lions (GL) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 2017
Lynn smoked a whopping 8 sixes and 6 boundaries to score 93 not out off a mere 41 balls, and on the other hand, Gambhir cracked 12 boundaries to score a resolute 76 not out. Gambhir and Lynn also reset the highest opening stand in IPL history, going past the previous best of Chris Gayle and Tillakaratne Dilshan’s 167-run stand which was recorded against Pune Warriors India (PWI) in IPL 2013. With this win, Kolkata Knight Riders are set to witness a huge spike in their Net Run Rate which should keep them at the top of the IPL 2017 points table. Kolkata Knight Riders chased the target of 184 with as many as 31 balls to spare. FULL CRICKET UPDATES: Gujarat Lions (GL) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 2017
In what turned out to be a rollicking start for Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 10, the Gambhir-led side registered their first-ever 10-wicket win. The unbeaten stand of 184 runs for the first wicket is now also the highest partnership for any wicket for Kolkata Knight Riders.
The mayhem began on the last ball of the first over from Praveen Kumar, when Lynn cracked a ball towards square leg with tremendous power. In the next over, Dhawal Kulkarni was hit for a six over midwicket and a four through mid-on. Lynn targetted Manpreet Gony in the next over, hitting the bowler for a six and a four as well, after Gambhir had started off with a boundary.
Kolkata Knight Riders raced to 53 in the first 5 overs, and this was when Gambhir dished out a harsh punishment to Shivil Kaushik for being wayward. Gambhir cracked 4 boundaries in the over to bring up KKR’s best ever returns in the powerplay. The seventh over of the innings was when Lynn turned into his monstrous best, smacked three sixes and a four to collect 23 runs off Dwayne Smith.
Lynn thus completed his firebrand half-century, studded with 5 sixes and 4 boundaries to join Yusuf Pathan in scoring the quickest fifty for Kolkata Knight Riders.
Gambhir, who showed tremendous form with cracking a dozen boundaries in his innings, brought up his fifty in the 10th over of the innings. With KKR crossing the 100-run mark in the eighth over, there was no hurry. But Gambhir continued to pummel the Gujarat bowlers, with Gony being hit for 3 boundaries in the 11th over.
Kolkata Knight Riders completed their run chase on the final ball of the 15th over, with Lynn being dropped on two consecutive occasions. Lynn smacked one more six — his eighth in the innings — and finished things off by hitting the winning runs. Gujarat Lions, on their part, could not do much against the storm that hit them in Rajkot. However, Gujarat bowlers were guilty of bowling poor lines, which allowed the KKR openers to free up their arms.
In the first innings, Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik did most of the hard work by adding 87 runs and taking the Gujarat Lions’ total to a combative 183 for 4. Raina went past Virat Kohli as the highest run-scorer in IPL history, scoring 68 not out off 51 balls with 7 boundaries. Karthik cracked a 25-ball 47 and Brendon McCullum scored a quick 35, but at the end, none of this was enough.
Gujarat Lions 183 for 4 in 20 overs (Brendon McCullum 35, Suresh Raina 68*, Dinesh Karthik 47; Kuldeep Yadav 2 for 25) lost to Kolkata Knight Riders 184 for no loss in 14.5 overs (Gautam Gambhir 76*, Chris Lynn 93*) by 10 wickets.
Man of the Match: Chris Lynn