IPL 2018: How Ishan Kishan pounded Kolkata Knight Riders at Eden Gardens
The transformation of Ishan Kishan took all of one ball on Wednesday. And, as the Mumbai Indians batsman moved from being beaten to belligerent, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) became increasingly woebegone. (KKR vs MI highlights)
When Kishan, 19, walked in, Mumbai Indians were 62/2 after nine overs in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match at Eden Gardens. Kuldeep Yadav beat Kishan with his first ball after he played for the turn that wasn’t. The next ball, in the innings’ 10th over, was dispatched for a six. The Kishan charge had begun. Soon, he would have Yadav’s number. (KKR vs MI scoreboard)
By the time he left, after a 21-ball 62 that had five fours and six sixes, Kishan had put Mumbai Indians on way to their third straight win in IPL 2018. (IPL 2018 points table)
“At that stage, he (Kishan) really changed the run rate. He batted well, played some nice shots. We bowled in areas he might have got out but he went over the fielders,” said KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik.
Kishan said it helped that MI let him bat at the top of the order. “It’s given me stability. It’s always good for a youngster to bat up the order….”
The role for him here was to hit well, said Kishan.
“The coach (Mahela Jayawardene) said during the timeout ‘just be yourself as we need some good hits today’. Rohit bhai (Sharma) too said ‘you know you can hit well’. They knew if I was there, I can get a lot of runs,” he added.
After his first scoring shot went for the maximum, Kishan hit three boundaries off Piyush Chawla in the next over, the 11th. He also hit Sunil Narine for a six before being dismissed.
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Karthik got Andre Russell back for the 12th over and Kishan smote him for a boundary on the off-side. When Prasidh Krishna strayed on the leg-side with the fine-leg inside the circle, Kishan hit him for a boundary. This was crisp hitting with all the fearlessness of youth.
One that seems to have had inputs from Jharkhand’s biggest sport icon, MS Dhoni. “I get a lot of tips from him….He tells me ‘you can take time, read the situation and that in turn should help you build your innings. That is when I feel confident,” said Kishan.
Kishan’s innings was best exemplified by the four sixes he hit off Kuldeep Yadav in the 14th over. “He loves bowling the googly to me. I knew he would come from the pad to get the ball to outside off and get me stumped. My target was that if I get the ball in my arc, I would send it out of the park,” said Kishan, who is three seasons old in the IPL and was with Gujarat Lions last term.