Sunil Narine’s sensational four wicket-haul propelled Kolkata Knight Riders to a fine start in its IPL 2021 Eliminator contest against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday.
Narine registered his best IPL bowling figures – 4/21 in four overs – since 2015 as RCB stumbled to 138 for seven in 20 overs after electing to bat first in the knockout fixture in Sharjah.
It was also Narine’s third four-for against RCB, having previously registered figures of 4/22 (2013) and 4/20 in 2014.
The 33-year-old was introduced into the attack in the 10th over and struck off his fourth delivery as he sent back a struggling KS Bharat (9, 16b). Narine then unleashed his bag of tricks on RCB’s famed trio of Kohli (39, 33b), AB de Villiers (11, 9b) and Glenn Maxwell (15, 18b) on a sluggish track, dismissing each of them in his next three overs.
In his worst outing for KKR in IPL 2020, Narine had managed only five wickets in 10 games – a stark contrast to his fortunes this season.
Narine has been the best performer with the ball in the middle-overs this season. His stunning economy rate of 5.44 in the middle-overs (6-15) is the best among all bowlers who have bowled a minimum of 50 deliveries. He has also managed 10 wickets in this phase.
Narine, who was surprisingly excluded from the West Indies squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup, has bagged 14 wickets in 12 matches this season. Earlier in August, Narine had finished the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2021 with 12 wickets in 10 games with a staggering economy of 4.37.