Shreyas Iyer’s leadership skills outshone Ravindra Jadeja’s in the season opener of IPL 2022 as Kolkata Knight Riders registered a comfortable six-wicket win over defending champions Chennai Super Kings at Wankhede Stadium. Ajinkya Rahane, who recently lost his place in India’s Test squad, silenced his critics with a crucial 44-run knock to set up the platform for his new franchise in a successful run chase. Shreyas hit the winning runs in his first match as KKR captain as his team chased down the 132-run target with 9 balls to spare.
Veteran Chennai Super Kings wicketkeeper-batsman MS Dhoni turned back the clock to smash his first IPL century since 2019. Dhoni ended his century drought to pull his team to a fighting total of 131/5 after a very sluggish start against a high-quality KKR bowling attack.
Chasing the target of 132, KKR were off to a solid start as Rahane and Venkatesh Iyer shared a 43-run stand for the opening wicket. However, Dwayne Bravo got the better of Venkatesh (16) with a slower one as he edged that to Dhoni behind the stumps. Rahane was then joined by Nitish Rana who also scored crucial 21 runs before becoming the second victim of Bravo.
Rahane, who was looking in great touch, was dismissed by New Zealand’s Mitchell Santner. The veteran India batter tried to play a big shot over mid-wicket but missed the connection and got caught by Jadeja.