Kallis' honesty pays
Rajasthan Royals had made slow progress to be 25 for 1 at the end of five overs before receiving a boost in the sixth - the last over of the Powerplay - as Morne Morkel leaked 20 runs. But apart from a wide delivery that cost his team three runs, he didn't do much wrong. Morkel's second delivery was slogged through mid-on by Sanju Samson without much timing, the third went to the fine-leg boundary off the inside half of the bat, the fifth was top-edged to fine-leg boundary again and the last teased the fielder to the midwicket boundary.
Shakib Al Hasan was included over Chris Lynn for his value as a wily bowler and he bowled an economical spell of 4-0-23-1. But fielding is where Knight Riders would have missed Lynn. The other night, he took a screamer at the boundary to win them a match. A similar chance flew off Ajinkya Rahane's bat towards Shakib at deep midwicket. Unfortunately, Shakib misjudged it completely, first running in, then, only managing to get a hand. Had he jumped, he could have taken the catch. The shot went for six runs.
Hitting a four is a non-event for most top-order batsmen. But not if you are Gautam Gambhir. Since April 4, he had played five matches - four of them in this IPL - and had just a single run. The wait for a boundary - for any runs really - must have been excruciating for Gambhir. He came close to getting there in the first over of the Knight Riders' innings as he pulled Stuart Binny to deep square leg and made it eventually in the second over, to his relief, punching one through point. The first one was followed by a confident one in the third over - a one-bounce four through midwicket - and finally the monkey was off his back.
Jacques Kallis quickly put his bat under his shoulder and walked off after getting a faint inside edge to the wicketkeeper off a Shane Watson delivery. He didn't wait for the umpire to raise his finger. Fortunately for him, he got immediate return on his 'being honest' policy as the replays showed the bowler had overstepped.
In an age where the fielders and bowlers appeal for anything close, it was strange to hear silence follow a loud woody knock as the ball flew past the outside edge of Kallis' bat. The wicketkeeper had his hands on his head, the slip fielder had the same expression and the bowler too had despair writ on his face. The sound was heard loud and clear in the replays too with the only thing being close to the ball being the bat.
Devashish Fuloria is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo