Siddarth Ravindran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo
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Kolkata Knight Riders turned in a shambolic performance in the field, with missed stumpings and misfields galore. Amid the mediocrity though, there was a moment of brilliance from Andre Russell. Pakistan's openers had made a bright start, but in the seventh over, they attempted a quick second. They thought it would be the bowler, Kuldeep Yadav, who would have to do the fielding after Ahmed Shehzad worked the ball towards midwicket. Instead, it was Russell zooming in from the deep, who arrowed in a direct hit to send the lumbering Nasir Jamshed back. In the Knight Riders dug-out, the support staff went up in jubilation at Russell's stunning effort. Only Wasim Akram, Knight Riders' mentor, was unsure whether to celebrate or not. "I'm as Lahori as they come," he later explained.
In the fourth over, Shehzad skipped down the track and launched a Piyush Chawla delivery to the long-off boundary. He charged out to the next delivery as well, only to be beaten by the turn. But he was saved as the wicketkeeper Manvinder Bisla failed to collect the ball. Did that make Shehzad stay back next ball? Nope, he was out of the crease once more, attempting the big hit again and this time connecting perfectly to send the ball soaring over long-off for six.
On his debut for Knight Riders, 19-year-old Kuldeep Yadav turned in an impressive spell, foxing batsmen with his wrong 'un, and showing he shouldn't be in the headlines purely for the novelty of being from a rare breed, a chinaman bowler. In his first three overs, though, he watched Bisla miss a regulation stumping , two weak fielding efforts allowing boundaries, and a lethargic Yusuf Pathan fail to get under a skier. He was relieved, then, to see Russell, Knight Riders' best fielder, settle under a Hafeez heave. It was safely pouched, and Kuldeep's delight was obvious, giving the nearest team-mate, Suryakumar Yadav, a tight hug.
Like first-time investors befuddled by the complexity of the stock market, batsmen facing Sunil Narine for the first time are confounded by his variations. The dread of facing the world's leading Twenty20 bowler, and of an imminent wicket, was evident when Saad Nasim came up against Narine in the 14th over. The first ball he faced from Narine cut away, bounced and beat Nasim's poke. Nasim tried to get off the mark by working the next delivery towards the leg side, only for a leading edge to send the ball to short cover for a catch.