The good run of Kolkata Knight Riders in the 11th edition of the Indian Premier League has been halted after they suffered twin losses at the hands of Mumbai Indians in a span of just three days.
VIVO IPL 2018: We still have a great chance and are hopeful to make the IPL playoffs: Karthik
After winning by a 13-run margin at the Wankhede stadium two days ago, Mumbai Indians came to the home ground of Kolkata on Wednesday and inflicted a crushing defeat of 102-runs.
Courtesy of the twin losses, KKR has now slipped to the fifth place and will have to win all their remaining games to ensure a safe passage to the knockout stages and will not have to rely on the fate of the other franchises.
KKR has a tough road ahead as their remaining matches are against Kings XI Punjab, Rajasthan Royals and the current table toppers Sunrisers Hyderabad.
KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik is still hopeful that his team can reach the playoffs safely. After the defeat at home he said to the reporters, "I am very disappointed. But there are three games and we take one game at a time. So if we win the games I know we have a great chance of getting to the playoffs. I believe in that and want my teammates to believe in that.”
Due to the huge margin defeat, KKR’s net run rate has dropped down to -0.359, which is the worst among all the other franchises.
“After this game, our run rate has taken a hit. We will take a call as the run rate has come to minus now. If we play three good games, it will go up," Karthik said.
Mumbai managed a mammoth total of 210/6, thanks to their wicketkeeper batsman Ishan Kishan’s 21-ball 62. In reply KKR were bundled up for just 108, which is their first all-out of this season.
"He changed the run rate and played some nice shots. We bowled in an area he could have got out buthe took on the bowlers at that stage.
"We succumbed to pressure and played a few bad shots and lost too many wickets in the Powerplay. When you lose too many wickets in the Powerplay, it's always going to be hard," Karthik said after witnessing Ishan Kishan’s blistering knock.
KKR’s go-to bowler, the left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav was hit for four consecutive sixes in the 14th over and conceded 43 runs in his three overs spell.
Talking about Kuldeep, the skipper said, "He is somebody who brings in a lot of control in the middle overs. And when he goes for runs it's hard.
“This game he went for a few runs, in the middle they took him down a little bit but these things happen in a game of cricket.
"He gets picked in all three formats and he is a confident young guy. He knows it's one of those bad days which every bowler has in a T20 format."
Karthik also said that in a 190 pitch, if the opponent gets well above the par, the going gets difficult.
"The wicket was good, 190 would have been par. It was 20 runs over par which made a lot of difference."
Karthik also said that it is unfair to blame the young guns of KKR for the loss.
"We are a new team and a young team. I understand stats wise maybe as a team KKR has not (played well against Mumbai) but this is a new team with lot of new players so we were hardly aware of these things.
"If we do 3-4 years down the line the same thing, then I think that's a fairer question. But these have happened with different teams and we are a new set of boys. It's unfair to label that blame on us even though as a team KKR has lost so many matches which I accept," concluded Karthik.