After registering a 10-run win against SunRisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Sunday, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) skipper Eoin Morgan said that both Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi set up the platform for the middle-order to play in the manner they want to.
Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi's knocks of 80 and 53 were backed by a spirited bowling performance as KKR triumphed over SRH by 10 runs here at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. KKR first posted a total of 187/6 in the allotted twenty overs and then the bowlers managed to restrict SRH to 177/5.
For Eoin Morgan's side, Prasidh Krishna managed to take two wickets. For SRH, Jonny Bairstow and Manish Pandey played knocks of 55 and 61 respectively. This win is also KKR's 100th win in the IPL.
"Delighted. The build-up to the tournament has been pretty good. The camp that we had pre-tournament, the guys gelled well. Never quite sure what performance they will produce.
Today was quite magnificent the way the guys batted. Guys at the top of the order. Nitish and Tripathi were absolutely outstanding and set up the game for our middle order to play in the manner we want to play," Morgan told host broadcaster Star Sports at the post-match presentation.
"Certainly the bowling, we couldn't have asked for a better start. Chopped and changed a bit in the powerplay. Wouldn't say that. A huge amount of structure goes into the decisions on the field. Have got a fantastic head coach in McCullum. Great backroom staff. The main job is to get the best out of the squad. IPL is all about the results. Guys buying into what we want to do. Bhajji starting really well in the first over and then not playing a part but using his experience to get around the guys in the game shows the selflessness in the side. Nice to start like this it's obviously a long tournament," he added.
Further talking about the batting performance of KKR, Morgan said: "We were very happy with the score. We thought if we bowled half-decently we should get over the line."
Earlier, Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi played knocks of 80 and 53 respectively as Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) posted a total of 187/6 in the allotted twenty overs. Andre Russell (5) failed to leave a mark with the bat as he was dismissed by Rashid Khan in the very next over, Rana (80) and Eoin Morgan (2) were sent back to the pavilion by Mohammed Nabi as SRH maintained a stranglehold over the KKR batters in the death overs.
In the final two overs, Dinesh Karthik (22*) and Shakib Al Hasan (3) managed to add a few crucial runs and KKR's total got beyond the 185-run mark.