David Miller’s IPL captaincy continued downhill as his Kings XI lost by six wickets to the Kolkata Knight Riders.
It was his third loss in four games, and his personal slump with the bat continued unabated.
In his last seven innings, since the start of the World Cup, has scored just 85 runs, the highest being 28. This time it was six, as the Kings scraped together just 138-8.
After losses in their first two games, the Kings had a good six-wicket win against Pune Supergiants. If they thought they had turned the corner, it was a thought that was ruthlessly rubbished as the Riders won with nearly three overs remaining.
The Riders put the Kings in to bat, but even they must have been surprised at how easily Miller’s men folded.
The plaudits will go to the spinners, but Morne Morkel, playing just his second game, got the ball rolling by taking out the impressive Manan Vohra (8) while giving away just 20 runs from three overs. He was to end with 2-27 off his four.
The spinners then wove a web which had the Kings flapping like trapped flies: Off-spinners Sunil Narine and Yusuf Pathan, complemented by the leg-breaks of Piyush Chawla, accounted for four wickets, but more importantly, collectively conceded less than six an over.
Only Shaun Marsh stood his ground, scoring 56 off 41, following Murali Vijay’s 26 off 22. Apart from that, there was nothing but a procession of failure.
The Knight Riders were never under pressure once Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir had put on 80 in eight overs. Kyle Abbott was harshly treated, going for 19 off two in that onslaught.