Salt’s incredible 89 carries Kolkata to comprehensive 8-wicket win over Lucknow - GulfToday

Salt’s incredible 89 carries Kolkata to comprehensive 8-wicket win over Lucknow


Phil Salt (L) celebrates his fifty runs and Mitchell Starc (2R) celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of Deepak Hooda during the IPL match in Kolkata on Sunday. AP/ AFP

Phil Salt's rapid 89 and three wickets for Mitchell Starc helped Kolkata Knight Riders race to a crushing eight-wicket win over Lucknow Super Giants on Sunday.

Starc's 3-28 kept Lucknow down to 161-7 at Kolkata's Eden Gardens, with the other Knight Riders' bowlers putting in disciplined performances after their side elected to field first.

The Australian left-arm quick became the most expensive buy in IPL history after Kolkata shelled out $2.98 million for his services.

Salt smashed 14 fours and three sixes in his whirlwind knock as Kolkata won with 4.2 overs to spare. It finished on 162-2 in 15.4 overs, replying to Lucknow’s 161-7 and clocked up its fourth win in five games this season. It was a second consecutive loss for the Super Giants who are now fifth with six points from as many games.

Salt’s second half-century of the season powered Kolkata’s chase from the very start, despite losing in-form Sunil Narine cheaply.

Left-arm pacer Mohsin Khan did the early damage for Lucknow, dismissing Narine as well as 18-year-old batter Angkrish Raghuvanshi (7).

The double breakthrough didn’t impede Salt who helped Kolkata to a powerful start of 42-2 in 3.1 overs.

Salt and skipper Shreyas Iyer then put on 120 runs for the unbroken third wicket off only 76 balls. Salt reached 50 off 26, including eight fours and two sixes, and then accelerated even more. One of the sixes was spilt over the boundary at deep square leg in the seventh over, giving the batter a second chance as well as bonus runs.

He took another 39 runs off the next 21 balls, with six fours and a six, en route to his highest IPL score. Salt’s previous best was 87 for Delhi Capitals last season. The keeper-batter had come into the Kolkata squad to replace compatriot Jason Roy, who had pulled out of the tournament for personal reasons.
Iyer finished on 38 not out, with six fours, letting his partner do most of the heavy work.

Starc started slowly, leaking 10 runs in his first over, but came back strongly and sent back Deepak Hooda in his third with the help of a diving catch at backward point from Ramandeep Singh.

Mystery spinner Narine choked the flow of runs and returned figures of 1-17 before Starc bowled the 20th over for just six runs and two wickets.

He got the dangerous Nicholas Pooran on the first ball, caught behind for 45, and finished with a yorker to bowl Arshad Khan.

Earlier, Lucknow was restricted to yet another sub-par score on an even batting surface at the Eden Gardens.

Nicholas Pooran top scored with 45 off 32, including four sixes, after Lucknow was down to 111-5 in 14.4 overs at one stage.

Pooran helped his side squeeze 50 runs off the last 27 balls, and he had some help from Ayush Badoni who scored 29.

Left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc, the most expensive player in the IPL, finally found some bowling rhythm and finished with 3-28 in four overs.

His spell had prevented Lucknow from making a solid start, down to 39-2 in 4.4 overs. Skipper Lokesh Rahul scored 39 off 27 balls, with three fours and two sixes, but couldn’t help relaunch Lucknow’s innings. Big hitting Australian Marcus Stoinis was out for just 10.


The Delhi Capitals have confirmed that all rounder Mitch Marsh had flown home to Australia after picking up a minor hamstring injury.

Marsh is expected to rejoin the Capitals later in the tournament and the 32-year-old is not considered to be a doubt for the Twenty20 World Cup in the Caribbean and US starting in early June.


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