The Indian Premier League (IPL) caravan moved to Kolkata, as hosts Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) went on to host the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the iconic Eden Gardens Stadium on April 8 (Sunday).
After major fluctuations in the flow of the game, with the game drifting towards one side to the other, it was the Knight Riders who ended up on the winning side.
KKR open their account on the points table with this four-wicket win.
Here’s a look at the five game-changing moments.
Big guns firing at all cylinders for RCB:
The big overseas names of Royal Challengers’ chipped in with vital contributions. Brendon McCullum laid the platform early on with his 27-ball 43.
AB de Villiers looked a class above the rest with his 44 which came off just 23 balls. De Villiers entertained the crowd with five maximums while Baz hit six boundaries and a couple of maximums to do the same.
Nitish Rana’s sensational over:
Just when Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers were going great guns with their partnership, Dinesh Karthik played a masterstroke by bringing in Nitish Rana into the attack.
The two titans of world cricket were looking to accelerate just before Rana was introduced.
However, seeing the part-timer, Kohli and de Villiers might have been licking their lips.
On the contrary, Rana managed to dismiss the two set batsmen which easily brought down the expected score by 30.
Mandeep Singh’s priceless cameo:
RCB were struggling after the loss of Sarfaraz Khan and only a handful of overs left. It all went spiralling down for the RCB after the flurry of boundaries in the middle overs.
However, RCB’s retained player, Mandeep Singh, stood out when asked needed with his useful 37 which came off 16 balls, at a strike rate of 205.5, which consisted of four boundaries and two sixes.
Sunil Narine Blitz:
Continuing from where he left off in IPL 2017, Sunil Narine played yet another flamboyant innings at a strike rate of 263.
Narine raced to his 50 off just 17 balls, in an innings which consisted of four boundaries and five sixes.
His knock, yet again, brought down the required run rate exponentially as KKR reached 68 within the powerplays.
The Royal Challengers applied pressure on the hosts with them reeling at 83-3.
However, it was the middle order which made the difference between the two sides.
Nitish Rana kept the required run rate in check with his flashy knock, while Dinesh Karthik provided the calm in the innings and finished the game for his side.
Andre Russell hit few lusty blows in the end to show no sign of rust in his batting.
Here’s the newsfeed: