Match Report:


Kolkata through to IPL final after Starc shines

Left-arm quick knocks Travis Head over early to down Pat Cummins-led Sunrisers Hyderabad in qualifier final

Mitchell Starc has had an expensive return to the Indian Premier League, but the Australian paceman delivered when it mattered most for his Kolkata Knight Riders.

Starc has gone the journey at stages during the tournament, going at 11.36 per over, but is ending it in prime form, justifying his record $4.43m price tag and blitzing the batters who had blitzed him.

In the qualifying final in Ahmedabad on Tuesday (Wednesday AEST) Starc took 3-34, tearing the heart out of Sunrisers Hyderabad's upper order, to set up an eight-wicket victory for KKR that propelled them into Sunday's final.

His victims included the key wicket of compatriot Travis Head, dismissed for a second-ball duck as Sunrisers were reduced to 4-39. Aided by a battling 30 not out by skipper Pat Cummins they scrambled to 159 all out, but that was soon made to look inadequate.

Cummins hit Starc's last two balls for six and four but could not match his impact with the ball, taking 1-38 off his three overs as KKR won with 38 balls and eight wickets to spare.

Head has had an excellent tournament but now made successive ducks, this one at the ground on which he made 137 in November's ODI World Cup final.

Capping a bad night for the South Australian he dropped a regulation catch at point to reprieve Shreyas Iyer on 14 – a far cry from the brilliant, game-turning catch he took off Rohit Sharma in November's decider.

Cummins scored 30 off 24 balls but it went in vain for the Sunrisers // Getty

The KKR captain hit the next ball for six and went on to make an unbeaten 24-ball 58.

Sunrisers may get a chance for revenge. On Friday (Saturday AEST) they will meet the winner of Wednesday's (Thursday AEST) eliminator between Rajasthan Royals and a Royal Challengers Bengaluru side likely to feature Glenn Maxwell and Cam Green.

"Not our day but we have another crack at it," said Cummins. "We'll try to put this one behind us pretty quickly. You get these days in T20 when it doesn't work out. We were off the pace, a few guys didn't get a start and we couldn't get it done with the ball."

Starc said he had bowled slightly shorter than before, but still pitched up enough to swing.

"It was nice to get the team off to the start we needed," he said. "Powerplay wickets are very important. It was nice to see the back of Trav (Head) early. He's been phenomenal this tournament. To get him cheaply was big."

Starc could have had four, but KKR decided against a review after a yorker struck Rahul Tripathi in front, thinking the ball had hit bat before foot. Tripathi, then on 14, went on to make 55, his partnership with Heinrich Klassen (32) giving Sunrisers some hope.

That was soon extinguished. Though Cummins dismissed the dangerous Sunil Narine (21) in the seventh over KKR were already 2-67. Shreyas and Venkatesh Iyer then cracked 97 in 44 balls as they romped home.

IPL 2024 standings

Matches played
No results
Net Run Rate
Total points
1 Kolkata Knight Riders Kolkata Knight Riders KKR 14 9 3 0 2 1.428 0 20
2 Sunrisers Hyderabad Sunrisers Hyderabad SUN 14 8 5 0 1 0.414 0 17
3 Rajasthan Royals Rajasthan Royals RAJ 14 8 5 0 1 0.273 0 17
4 Royal Challengers Bengaluru Men Royal Challengers Bengaluru Men RCB 14 7 7 0 0 0.459 0 14
5 Chennai Super Kings Chennai Super Kings CSK 14 7 7 0 0 0.392 0 14
6 Delhi Capitals Men Delhi Capitals Men DEL 14 7 7 0 0 -0.377 0 14
7 Lucknow Super Giants Lucknow Super Giants LSG 14 7 7 0 0 -0.667 0 14
8 Gujarat Titans Gujarat Titans GUT 14 5 7 0 2 -1.063 0 12
9 Punjab Kings Punjab Kings KXI 14 5 9 0 0 -0.353 0 10
10 Mumbai Indians Mumbai Indians MI 14 4 10 0 0 -0.318 0 8

M: Matches played

W: Wins

L: Losses

T: Ties

N/R: No results

NRR: Net Run Rate

Ded.: Deductions

PTS: Total points

Australians in IPL 2024

Delhi Capitals: Mitch Marsh (A$1.2m), David Warner (A$1.16m), Jhye Richardson (A$890,000), Jake Fraser-McGurk (A$92,000)

Gujarat Titans: Spencer Johnson (A$1.78m), Matthew Wade (A$446,000)

Kolkata Knight Riders: Mitchell Starc (A$4.43m)

Lucknow Super Giants: Marcus Stoinis (A$1.7m), Ashton Turner (A$178,000)

Mumbai Indians: Tim David (A$1.53m)

Punjab Kings: Nathan Ellis (A$135,000)

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Cameron Green (A$3.15m), Glenn Maxwell (A$2m)

Sunrisers Hyderabad: Pat Cummins (A$3.67m), Travis Head (A$1.2m)

*Prices in AUD, conversions correct at time of auction