Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) continued to use their mystery spinner Sunil Narine as their opening batsman alongside skipper Gautam Gambhir in the 10th edition of Indian Premier League (IPL). In the 23rd match of the tournament between KKR and Gujarat Lions at Eden Gardens, Narine gave a blistering start to his side by slamming a 17-ball 42, a knock that included 9 fours and a six, which means all of his runs came in boundaries. This is the third time Narine opened for KKR. The first time he opened in IPL for KKR was against Kings XI Punjab and provided a perfect start to his side by scoring 37 off just 18 deliveries. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: KKR vs GL – Match 23
Narine’s short innings of 42 runs in today’s game against GL is the highest score in IPL history for an innings that included only boundaries. The previous highest was 36 by Sanath Jayasuriya against Deccan Chargers in 2008. Narine’s strike rate of 247.05 is the best by any KKR opener in an IPL match with 40-run cut-off. Narine got to face four bowlers, three of them were pacers.
He started his batting by facing Praveen Kumar and scored 12 from 6 balls against him. Then, Narine faced James Faulkner, whom he blasted for 16 from just five deliveries. The third pacer to bowl him was Basil Thampi, who conceded 14 from 5 against Narine.
The fourth bowler was none other than GL skipper Suresh Raina, who dismissed on the very first ball he bowled to Narine. However, till then Narine had done his job by providing perfect start to KKR.
Well, it was one of those days when commentators had to say that Gambhir only needed to give strike to Narine.