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2024-05-27 09:23:45

Starc saves the best for last as Kolkata win 3rd IPL trophy

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Starc saves the best for last as Kolkata win 3rd IPL trophy

Left arm fast bowling great Mitchell Starc bowled a sensational opening spell to lead Kolkata Knight Riders to their third Indian Premier League title with a eight-wicket thrashing of Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Sunday final.

Kolkata bowled out Hyderabad for IPL's lowest total of 113 in a final as Australia's left-arm quick Starc returned figures of 2-14 to live up to his top billing in the world's most lucrative T20 tournament, reports AFP India. 

Starc went to Kolkata for a record $2.98 million in the December auction and ended the IPL with two stellar performances, including a match-winning 3-34 in the first play-off to hammer the same opponent.

Kolkata's batsmen had it easy and despite Sunil Narine's early departure, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who made 39, and Venkatesh Iyer, on 52 not out, helped the team home with 9.3 overs to spare after a partnership of 91.

Iyer, a left-handed batsman, reached his 50 in 24 balls and hit the winning runs to trigger celebrations for Kolkata, who remained the most dominant team after they ended top of the table with 20 points in the league phase.

Skipper Shreyas Iyer was unbeaten on six, and at the other end, when Kolkata players came rushing on to the pitch and the stadium fireworks went off.

"Great night for KKR. What a game, what a season," player-of-the-match Starc said.

"Probably the two most exciting teams in the final. We have had a fantastic squad of bowlers and batters, our staff have been fantastic to get everyone peaking."

On the pressure of his high price tag, 34-year-old Starc said: "There's been jokes about the money. I am experienced, that's helped with all the expectations."

Players and national teams now move into the T20 World Cup starting June 1 in the West Indies and the United States.

Bd pratidin English/Lutful Hoque

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