Pat Cummins made an impact straight away for Kolkata Knight Riders as he equalled KL Rahul’s record for the fastest fifty in the history of IPL with a sensational 15-ball unbeaten 56 against Mumbai Indians at the MCA Stadium in Pune. KKR defeated MI by five wickets.
The Australian Test skipper, playing his first match in IPL 2022, was batting at 22 from eight balls in the 15th over with KKR needing 35 from the last five overs. While the chase looked much in control for the Shreyas Iyer-led side, Cummins decided to swing his bat as the doctor ordered.
It was unbelievable stuff from Cummins as KKR, needing 35 from 30 balls, got them all in just six deliveries with the Australian Test captain hitting Daniel Sams for six sixes and four boundaries in his 15-ball 56, leaving his skipper Shreyas Iyer as well as rival captain Rohit Sharma stunned.
He reached his 50 in 14 balls, equalling Rahul, whose feat came in 2018 against Delhi Capitals in Mohali. Rahul was playing for Punjab kings then. This was KKR’s third win in the tournament. “I probably think I'm most surprised by that innings,” Man of the Match Cummins told after the game.
“I'm glad that it came off. I was thinking of having a swing if it was in my area. Very satisfying to do it on my first game this season. Was just trying to pepper the shorter boundary. The hard thing after a big auction is that there are a lot of changes from last year,” added the Australian.
The other fastest fifties go to now-retired Yusuf Pathan and Sunil Narine. Interestingly, both of them took 15 balls and donned the KKR jersey during the feat. While Pathan did it against Sunrisers Hyderabad in 2014, Narine blasted the Royal Challengers Bangalore bowlers in 2017 in Bengaluru.
Meanwhile, Sams’ 35 in an a over on Wednesday was also the third-expensive in IPL. Prasanth Parameswaran (vs RCB in 2011) and Harshal Patel (vs CSK in 2021) have conceded more runs in an over in IPL – both 37.
Cummins had always been successful against Mumbai Indians. In his last three innings against MI, Cummins had scores of 33(12), 53 not out (36) and 56 not out (15). With the ball, he took 2/49.
With three wins from four games, Kolkata Knight Riders go atop the table with six points. Five-time champions Mumbai Indians join defending champions Chennai Super Kings at the bottom half of the table with no wins from three games so far in IPL 2022.
Earlier, Mumbai Indians rode on a brilliant 83-run stand between Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Varma to post 161/4 in 20 overs. Suryakumar, who was playing his first game this season hit a 35-ball 52 while West Indian Kieron Pollard clobbered three sixes in the final over to take MI past 150.