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PIX: Russell assault in vain; RCB ride on Kohli ton

Last updated on: April 20, 2019 00:33 IST

Moeen Ali, who scored a 28-ball 66 earlier, defends 24 in the final over to take Royal Challengers Bangalore past Kolkata Knight Riders.

Images from Friday's IPL match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore, in Kolkata.

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Virat Kohli

IMAGE: Royal Challengers Bangalore's Virat Kohli launches into a celebratory run after completing his hundred during Friday's IPL match against Kolkata Knight Riders, in Kolkata. Photograph: BCCI

Royal Challengers Bangalore scored a thrilling 10-run victory over Kolkata Knight Riders for only their second success of the season after Andre Russell and Nitish Rana nearly pulled off the impossible in the Indian Premier League match in Kolkata on Friday.

 

Needing 113 runs off the last six overs, Russell (65 off 25 balls) and Rana (85 not out off 46) almost got their team over the line, only for Moeen Ali to defend 24 in the final over.

The tense climax came after Virat Kohli smashed 100 off 58 balls for his fifth century in the IPL and first this season.

Andre Russell

IMAGE: Andre Russell clobbered 65 runs, which included 9 sixes and 2 fours, off 25 balls. Photograph: BCCI

RCB hammered 91 runs off the last five overs to post 213 for four, their highest total this year. Ali's 66 off 28 while batting alongside Kohli also proved crucial for RCB's cause as they finally managed to defend.

The win keeps RCB mathematically alive in the tournament while KKR suffered their fourth loss in as many games.

Following a Kohli special, it was the turn of swing king Dale Steyn to land some body blows on the opposition. Playing his first game of the season after coming in as a replacement, the South African great removed Chris Lynn and Shubman Gill to leave KKR reeling at 33 for three in five overs.

Nitish Rana

IMAGE: Nitish Rana scored 85 off 46 ball, including 9 fours and 5 sixes. Photograph: BCCI

Russell tried his best to pull off another improbable chase for KKR in the company of Rana but this time it wasn't to be.

Earlier, Kohli scored his first century of the season after Moeen Ali's blistering knock as Royal Challengers amassed 213 for four.

India’s skipper paced his innings brilliantly before getting out to the last ball of the innings for a 58-ball 100, his fifth in the IPL.

RCB scored 91 runs off the last five overs to record their highest total of the season.

Moeen Ali

IMAGE: Moeen Ali hit six sixes and five fours in his 28-ball 66. Photograph: BCCI

It was Ali who provided the much-needed oxygen to the RCB innings, smashing six sixes and five fours to seize momentum after a slow start.

Kohli and Ali shared 90 runs off 43 balls and there was no looking back after Ali's assault.

IMAGE: Moeen Ali is congratulated by Virat Kohli after his breezy 50. Photograph: BCCI

The match swung in the 16th over when Kuldeep Yadav bled 27 runs with Ali going berserk, smashing the star India spinner for three sixes and two boundaries. The chinaman ended up with figures of 1/59 in four overs.

Kohli, who scored his first 50 off 40 balls, changed gears in the second half of his innings. Such was his domination that he took just 17 balls for his second fifty.

IMAGE: Andre Russell watches anxiously as Robin Uthappa gets under the ball to catch Akshdeep Nath. Photograph: BCCI

Kohli mistimed the ball with a couple of inside-edges to the boundary, while his left-handed opening parter Parthiv Patel (11 off 11) had a hit-and-miss stay before falling to Sunil Narine inside the powerplay.

In the middle of all this, RCB sent in Akshdeep Nath (13 off 15) at number three keeping the in-form Ali in waiting. RCB scored only 42 inside the powerplay, but once Kohli and Ali got going there was nothing the KKR bowlers could do to contain them.

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