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Kolkata Knight Riders Clinch Third IPL Title

 Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders the picture has been taken from KKR X account

In a thrilling culmination of the IPL 2024 season, the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) clinched their third IPL title by defeating Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) by 8 wickets at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. The victory marks a significant achievement for Kolkata Knight Riders , who last lifted the trophy a decade ago in 2014 under Gautam Gambhir’s captaincy.

Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page massenger
 Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger

A Low-Scoring Final

Sunrisers Hyderabad captain Pat Cummins, who won the toss, decided to bat first, which ultimately backfired. SRH was bowled out for a meagre 113 runs, the lowest total in IPL finals history. This score fell short of the previous record held by Chennai Super Kings, who managed 125/9 against Mumbai Indians in 2013.

KKR’s bowlers were on fire, with all-rounder Andre Russell leading the charge by claiming three crucial wickets. He was ably supported by Mitchell Starc and Harshit Rana, who took two wickets each, dismantling SRH’s batting lineup.

Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Batting Struggles

SRH’s innings never got off the ground, with key batters failing to deliver under pressure. Heinrich Klaasen, a consistent performer for SRH throughout the season, was dismissed by Harshit Rana, causing a significant blow to the team’s hopes. Captain Pat Cummins and Jaydev Unadkat tried to salvage the innings, but their efforts were insufficient to post a competitive total.

The integral moments of the innings included:

  • Andre Russell’s dismissal of Abdul Samad and Shahbaz Ahmed put SRH on the back foot.
  • Varun Chakravarthy’s spin proving too challenging for the middle order.
  • Sunil Narine’s key wicket of Jaydev Unadkat effectively sealed SRH’s fate.

Kolkata Knight Riders Comfortable Chase

Chasing a modest target of 114, KKR’s innings was anchored by a splendid half-century from Venkatesh Iyer. His aggressive start, featuring consecutive boundaries and a six off T Natarajan, set the tone for a straightforward chase. Chasing a modest target, KKR openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Venkatesh Iyer got off to a flying start. Iyer was in a bell, grant mood, smashing three fours and two sixes in his 28-ball 52. Gurbaz provided solid support at the other end as the duo scored 72 runs for the opening wicket in just six overs. Iyer’s dismissal for 52 brought Nitish Rana to the crease, who, along with Gurbaz, guided KKR to an eight-wicket victory with 57 balls to spare. Gurbaz remained unbeaten on 32 off 28 balls. 

Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page massenger
 Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger

Key highlights of KKR’s innings included:

  • It was a strong opening stand despite the early loss of Sunil Narine.
  • Venkatesh Iyer’s explosive batting brought up his half-century with a flurry of boundaries and sixes.
  • Consistent scoring kept the pressure off KKR, with Gurbaz and Iyer ensuring no further hiccups.

 

Mitchell Starc’s outstanding performance 

Mitchell Starc was erratic, inconsistent, expensive, and a pale shadow of the world-class left-arm pacer who Kolkata Knight Riders  co-owner Shah Rukh Khan had signed in the IPL 2024 mini-auctions after shelling out Rs 25.75 crore. Starc’s below-par league performances were food for the social media trolls, who did not leave a single opportunity to make fun of his whopping IPL auction price of Rs 24.75 crore. 

 Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger
Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger

But their ability to rise to the occasion separates good players from great ones. After a below-par season burdened by his status as the most costly player in IPL auction history, Mitchell Starc finally showcased his genius with the white ball, delivering a performance for the ages against the Sunrisers in Qualifier 1 and then in the title clash. On May 21, Starc returned with three wickets in the powerplay, dismantling the SRH top order and leaving them in a shock from which they could not fully recover.

Strategic Insights

The pitch at MA Chidambaram Stadium, known for its sluggish nature favoring spinners, played into Kolkata Knight Riders strengths. Their bowling attack, led by Russell and Chakravarthy, exploited the conditions perfectly, while SRH struggled to adapt.

KKR’s captain, Shreyas Iyer, expressed satisfaction with the team’s performance, noting the importance of executing their pre-match strategies effectively. “I struggled with back issues in the longer format after the World Cup. But when the IPL was approaching, I only wanted to put my best foot forward. Our planning and strategizing paid off,” Iyer said post-match.

 

Dream 11 Predictions and Final Lineups Lineups

The final match saw top players from both sides in action. Kolkata Knight Riders  fielded a strong lineup, including Shreyas Iyer, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, and Mitchell Starc. SRH’s lineup featured Travis Head, Abhishek Sharma, Aiden Markram, and captain Pat Cummins, though they fell short of expectations in the final showdown.

The Road to the Final

A dominating run in the league stage marked Kolkata Knight Riders journey to the title. They finished at the top of the points table with nine wins, three losses, and two no-results. They secured their direct entry into the final by defeating SRH in the first qualifier.

SRH, on the other hand, had to fight their way through the second qualifier against Rajasthan Royals, winning by 36 runs to earn their spot in the final.

Post-Match Celebrations

The Kolkata Knight Riders  team and their fans celebrated the victory with rejoicing. The win marked a return to glory for the franchise and highlighted the contributions of key players like Venkatesh Iyer and Andre Russell, who were instrumental throughout the season.

 Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger
Picture Credit: Kolkata Knight Riders this picture has been taken from Kolkata Knight Riders official page messenger

Reflecting on SRH’s Campaign

For SRH, the final was a disappointing end to an otherwise strong campaign. Captain Pat Cummins acknowledged the team’s struggles on the night but remained optimistic about their performance over the season. “We had a tough night, but the team showed great spirit and fight throughout the tournament. We’ll come back stronger next year,” Cummins stated.

Conclusion

Venkatesh Iyer’s brilliant half-century and Kolkata Knight Riders all-around bowling performance proved too much for SRH in the final. Iyer’s return to form after missing the 2023 season was key to Kolkata Knight Riders  triumph. The IPL 2024 final was a testament to the high-intensity competition and unpredictable nature of T20 cricket. Kolkata Knight Riders  third title win after a decade underscored their resilience and ability to perform under pressure. As the curtains close on another exciting season, fans are already looking forward to what the next edition of the IPL will bring.

Tania Mukherjee
Author: Tania Mukherjee

Tania Mukherjee is an author. Immersing herself in the world of Entertainment and expressing her thoughts along with her feelings through the power of the written word. With a deep passion for writing, she finds solace and fulfillment in conveying her ideas to others.

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