Cricket

IPL 2024 Final: 'Kolkata Knight Riders Played Like Invincibles', Says Captain Shreyas Iyer

Starc said the heavy price tag of Rs 24.75 crore never really bogged him down, and, in fact, he enjoyed leading the bowling unit of Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL 2024

Shreyas Iyer and Mitchell Starc after winning the IPL 2024. AP Photo
Kolkata Knight Riders' captain Shreyas Iyer celebrates Mitchell Starc after winning against Sunrisers Hyderabad during the Indian Premier League cricket final match in Chennai. AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.
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After guiding Kolkata Knight Riders to their third IPL title on Sunday, captain Shreyas Iyer said his side "played like invincibles" the whole season. (As It Happened)

The Knight Riders lorded over Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL final, winning the lopsided title clash by eight wickets in Chennai at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.

"Absolutely comprehensive (the win). We played like invincibles throughout the season. There's so much to cherish right now. This is what we demanded from the team and every individual," Shreyas said during the post-match presentation.

"They stood up to the right occasion and the feeling is hard to express. It is pleasing, the performance has been flawless throughout. I am running out of words right now," he added.

After the IPL, Shreyas will have to wait for more game time as he is not a part of India's squad for the T20 World Cup.

The Mumbaikar hoped to keep in touch with the game.

"All we demanded from ourselves was to back each other whatever the situation is. Looking forward to playing more competitive cricket," he said.

The elegant right-hander reserved a special word of praise for Mitchell Starc, whose two wickets in the Power Play denied SRH early momentum.

"That's when all the big players stand up, right? It was a high-pressure game and he's been so good off the field. He's never shown any complacency in his work ethic. He stepped up to the right occasion," he noted.

The Mumbai man also heaped accolades on all-rounder Andre Russell, who produced a three-wicket burst in the final.

"He's got that magic wand. He's looking forward to picking wickets. All the guys stepped up at the right time and that's made it easier. It has been a flawless season."

We're outplayed: Cummins

SRH skipper Pat Cummins said his side was outplayed by the Knight Riders on the night.

"I thought they bowled fantastically. We were outplayed. They didn't give us anything. It was a tricky wicket and didn't feel like a 200-plus wicket. 160 would have given us a chance."

Cummins also thanked his players for a fantastic IPL campaign and the crowd for supporting SRH.

"I had not worked with many of the guys before but it was great working with them. A really great squad and the staff.

"We play a lot in India but in front of a sea of blue. So, it was good to have the crowd on our side at times," he added.

A lot has been made of money: Starc

Starc said the heavy price tag of Rs 24.75 crore never really bogged him down, and, in fact, he enjoyed leading the bowling unit of Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL 2024.

Starc produced a fine spell upfront taking 2/14, helping KKR to beat Sunrisers by eight wickets in the title round.

"A lot has been made of the money. I am older and more experienced now. So, that helped to deal with all that and leading the attack.

"It was a lot of fun for me personally and we have got an exciting attack," said the left-arm pacer.

Starc lauded the KKR bowlers for lifting their game.

"We didn't know what to expect but the bowling unit showed all the skills they have and the wicket-taking balls. It will be great to see how they go," he added.

Starc said it felt great to stand on the podium after an "awkward journey".

"It was a great night for KKR. What a season. It was an awkward journey. I think we had a fantastic squad.

"We remained such a consistent side with contributions from everyone. That was a big part of our success," said the Aussie.

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