Before this year no one had ever got 53 off the last 3 overs to win an IPL game. Thanks to Andre Russell, Kolkata Knight Riders have done that twice already - both 'easily' in the end. Russell is redefining what is attainable - and considered normal - in T20. With the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) needing 54 off the last three overs, it looked like the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) finally had a reason to smile. But Andre Russell had other ideas.
After warming up in the 18th over, he launched into Tim Southee in the 19th as he picked four sixes and a boundary. The rest, as they say, is history with KKR chasing down RCB's score of 205 with five balls to spare.
KXIP co-owner Preity Zinta 'felt bad' after nationwide criticism of KL Rahul following Koffee with Karan fiasco
IPL 2019, RCB vs KKR: Virat Kohli slams 'unacceptable' bowling after Bangalore suffer fifth consecutive loss
Russell now has 207 runs from 77 balls at an average of 103.50 this IPL season. Here are his scores of each of those deliveries since KKR's opening game:
Speaking after the game on Friday, Russell kept it simple and said that he just trusts his hitting prowess. He added that no ground is big for him and he is in a good space thanks to the support of his teammates.
"The support is good from the boys and I am in a good space so that I can express myself. No ground is big enough for me I guess, I just trust my power. Hand-eye coordination is the key (for low full tosses) as they aren't easy to hit. I try short arm jabs as extending the arms can put you in trouble. Can't explain much, rather show that on the field," he said.
KKR needed 68 off 26 balls when he came out to bat and skipper Dinesh Karthik asked him to settle down by playing out a few balls. And he did just that as he scored just one run off the first 4 balls that he faced from the RCB bowlers.
"I was confident when I went out to bat. DK was telling me to take a few balls to see how the pitch is behaving. I was watching in the dugout on TV and had a fair idea. When you need 68 off 20-odd balls, it doesn't happen every day. Need to put your body on the line.
"The nature of T20 is such that one over can change the momentum. That's why I never give up. A part of me was saying that the runs needed were too much but I wanted to fight and eventually, we won with five balls spare," Russell added.
(With IANS inputs)