Pune: Ajinkya Rahane cracked a superb half-century to power Rising Pune Supergiants to a competitive 160/5 against Kolkata Knight Riders in an IPL match at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium here on Sunday.
Rahane cracked four boundaries and three sixes in his 52-ball 67-run innings to anchor the Pune innings. Steven Smith (31) also contributed and added 56 runs with Rahane for the second wicket.
For Kolkata, Sunil Narine (1/32), Shakib Al Hasan (1/14), R Sathish (1/20) and Umesh Yadav (1/16) picked up one wicket each after skipper Gautam Gambhir won the toss and elected to field here.
Put in to bat, the Supergiants lost their first wicket in the fourth over when opener Faf du Plessis (4) was cleaned up by Shakib. However, other opener Rahane and Smith stitched a 56-run partnership off 50 balls to steady the ship but the Australian was run-out when he went well down and the bowler Sathish whipped off the bails.
New batsman Thisara Perera (12 off 9 balls) too could not stay longer as he was dismissed in the 15th over when he tried to play a cross-batted shot only to see his stumps disturbed by a slowish Sathish delivery.
Albie Morkel (16 off 9 balls) then joined Rahane and stepped the gas. It was the Mumbaikar who first blasted Piyush Chawla in the 16th over. He then picked Umesh Yadav for the same treatment in the next over. However, Rahane was dismissed by the Narine in the first ball of the next over when the West Indies spinner caught and bowled the opener. Albie then blasted successive sixes off Narine before becoming a prey of Yadav in the 19th over. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni then provided some fireworks.
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