Karthik shines with the bat as Kolkata knock Rajasthan out of 2018 IPL

Kolkata Knight Riders register 25-run win in eliminator

Andre Russell’s all-round performance and Dinesh Karthik’s fighting half-century helped Kolkata Knight Riders in booking a place in the second qualifier after a 25-run win against Rajasthan Royals in the eliminator in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in Kolkata on Wednesday.

In the first knock-out encounter of the tournament, it was Rajasthan captain Ajinkya Rahane who won the toss and opted to field first. His decision looked a correct one as the home side lost first four wickets at the score of 51 in the eighth over.

At that stage, captain Karthik first joined hands with Shubman Gill (28 off 17 balls with the help of three fours and one six) and later with Russell to take Kolkata to a respectable total of 169 for seven in their allotted 20 overs. Karthik finished the innings with the top score of 52 off 38 balls with the help of four fours and two sixes, whereas Russell scored 49 not out off just 25 balls with the help of three fours and five sixes.

For the visitors, pacers Ben Laughlin, Jofra Archer and off-spinner Krishnappa Gowtham claimed two wickets each. In reply, Rajasthan had a solid beginning courtesy 47-run opening between captain Rahane and Rahul Tripathi which put the visiting side on top.

But a second-wicket partnership of 62 off 54 balls between Rahane and Sanju Samson slowed the team’s progress, which proved vital for the side as Rajasthan only managed to score 144 for the loss of four wickets in their allotted 20 overs. Samson finished the innings with the top score of 50 off 38 balls with the help of four fours and two sixes, whereas Rahane scored 46 off 41 balls with the help of four fours and one six.

For Kolkata, leg-spinner Piyush Chawla claimed two, whereas pacer Prasidh Krishna and left-arm Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav claimed a wicket each.

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