Begin typing your search above and press return to search.

Indian Premier League 2021

IPL 2021: SRH vs KKR: Player of the Day – Nitish Rana

With 9-fours and 4-sixes, Nitish Rana blew away the SRH bowlers.

Nitish Rana was in his element in the season opener against Sunrisers Hyderabad. [Credits: InsideSport]

Nitish Rana was in his elements in the season opener against Sunrisers Hyderabad. [Credits: InsideSport]


Anjishnu Roy

Updated: 11 April 2021 7:12 PM GMT

Kolkata Knight Riders really struggled with their opening order in UAE last season.

They tried to open with Sunil Narine-Shubman Gill, Shubman Gill-Rahul Tripathi and even Shubman Gill-Nitish Rana.

In their opening match of IPL 2021, they went ahead with the third option, and considering the result it got them, their opening order woes might finally have a solution.

At the start of the innings in the match against Sunrisers Hyderabad, both Nitish Rana and Shubman Gill looked confident.

Rana even began proceedings with a sweetly timed drive through mid-off that raced to the boundary. He continued to make a mockery out of Sandeep Sharma's deliveries.

Both the batsmen found the gaps every once in a while, kept taking sure runs and continued rotating strike and whenever the occasion arose, launched a big one.

Though Gill was left undone by a perfect Rashid Khan googly dipped in the sauce of deceit, Rana refused to stay down.

Nitish Rana did the Mesut Ozil celebration after reaching his half-century. [Credits: FPJ]

Nitish Rana made sure to hold the fort and welcome Rahul Tripathi to the party.

Thereafter, with Tripathi set after facing 10 deliveries, Rana blasted one high into the night sky to get to a confident half-century.

The 27-year-old marked his 12th fifty in the competition by mimicking footballer Mesut Ozil's celebration.

With KKR at 83-1 in 10 overs, his job was far from done. He needed to stay and carry the onslaught on the SRH bowlers.

Sizing himself up after getting to his half-century, Rana carried on the pursuit of getting as many runs on board as he could.

The big guns weren't kept at bay either.

Six off T Natarajan, six off Sandeep Sharma and a boundary off Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

It was in the 18th over that the Sunrisers Hyderabad bowlers finally found a breakthrough against Rana.

The batsman from Delhi couldn't middle a lofted shot against Mohammad Nabi and taking a mean slice of the lower bat, the ball travelled miles in the air, only to end up in Vijay Shankar's hands.

His 55-ball 80 helped the Knights to get to 160 in 17.3 overs and with DK and Shakib Al Hasan still to arrive, Rana knew he had done his job.

KKR will be very confident by the start he's given them in the tournament.

He also got a lot of assistance from Rahul Tripathi's excellent cameo and with Shubman Gill expected to get a big knock soon, their top order seems sorted at the moment.

Next Story