MI registered their second successive win in the Indian Premier League 2023, after beginning the campaign with two back-to-back defeats. Whereas, KKR suffered two losses on the trot and remained glued at fifth position in the points table with four points.
With the two points from the victory, MI moved up to eighth spot in the ten-team standings.
As it happened: Mumbai Indians vs Kolkata Knight Riders
Chasing a challenging 186, Ishan Kishan (58) and Suryakumar Yadav (43) led the charge for MI as the hosts chased down the target in just 17.4 overs.
Iyer scored the fastest century in this year’s IPL — 104 off 51 balls (6x4s, 9x6s) — but could not stop KKR from suffering their ninth defeat in 10 matches at the Wankhede Stadium, and an overall 23rd in 32 matches against MI.
The highlight of Mumbai Indians’ win was not just their sturdy response with the bat chasing 186, but their key middle-order batter Suryakumar banishing batting woes with a 25-ball 43 laced with four fours and three sixes.
Suryakumar also stepped up to lead Mumbai Indians in the game in which regular captain Rohit Sharma played as an impact substitute owing to a stomach bug as MI won with 14 balls to spare, finishing at 186/5 in 17.4 overs.
Tim David struck an unbeaten 24 off 13 balls with two sixes and a four as MI recorded a second successive win while chasing.
The platform, however, was laid early by Kishan and Sharma, who went hammer and tongs from the second over onwards to add 65 for the first wicket in 4.5 overs, attacking the KKR pacers Umesh Yadav and Shardul Thakur in particular.
The first-wicket partnership looked ominous for KKR who managed to break through, with Yadav taking a fine diving catch at mid-on off Suyash Sharma in the fifth over.
Sharma fell for a 13-ball 20 with two sixes and a four after helping MI past 50-run mark inside four overs.
On the other end, Kishan brought up his fifty in 21 balls with five fours and four sixes. His charge was stopped by Varun Chakravarthy, with the KKR mystery spinner cleaning up Kishan after a 25-ball 58 with five sixes and as many fours.
The rookie leg-spinner Suyash claimed his second wicket in the form of Tilak Varma, in the 14th over, who played one onto his wickets after a 25-ball 30 (3x4s, 1x6s) having added 60 from 38 balls with Suryakumar for the third wicket.
Earlier in the afternoon, Iyer’s maiden century in IPL powered Kolkata Knight Riders to 185/6.
The 28-year-old India and KKR batting all-rounder Iyer waged a lone battle with the bat against Mumbai Indians, recording his highest score in the IPL as well as this season among all batters, hitting an overall six fours and nine sixes to bring up the second century of this IPL edition from only 49 balls.
Iyer bettered the record set by Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Harry Brook a couple of nights ago in terms of fastest century this season, who made 100 from 55 balls against KKR.
While Iyer, who injured his knee at the start of his innings while attempting a ramp shot off Cameron Green, dominated the Mumbai Indians bowlers, none of the KKR top-order batter could trouble the scorers.
The blow was indeed painful as Iyer, playing in his third IPL season for KKR, hobbled between the wickets to complete runs, but the pain eventually subsided which gave the left-handed batter a chance to play naturally.
In an innings replete with strokes hit all around the park, Iyer completed his maiden IPL century with five fours and nine sixes.
While most of the KKR batters did not last long enough, Iyer also did well to score heavily in his 48-run stand for the second wicket with Rahmanullah Gurbaz (8), 50 runs for the fourth wicket with Shardul Thakur (14) and 36 for the fifth wicket with Rinku Singh (18).
Nitish Rana (5) also had a game to forget with the bat, mistiming one to long-on off Shokeen and walked away after exchanging a few words with the spin bowler.
KKR’s latest sensation Rinku fell for a run-a-ball 18 with two fours and all-rounder Andre Russell freed up his arms, scoring his first double-digit total after three games to finish on 21 not out from 11 balls (3x4s, 1x6s).
MI handed debut to Arjun Tendulkar who opened the attack and got the ball to swing back into the KKR right-handers, sending down two largely impressive overs.
(With inputs from PTI)