Kolkata Knight Riders beat Sunrisers Hyderabad in a thriller in their IPL 2024 opener at Eden Gardens, after Heinrich Klaasen pulled SRH back into the run chase only to fall short off the final ball of the match.

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Sunrisers looked to be all-but out of the massive run chase against KKR (209), after losing wickets through the middle phase of the innings. Harshit Rana dismissed Mayank Agarwal, before Andre Russell sent back Abhishek Sharma caught at fine leg. Aiden Markram chipped to midwicket in the 12th over to bring Klaasen to the crease. At that point, Sunrisers were 107-3, and needed another 102 runs from 50 balls. That worsened to 94 runs needed off 36 balls at the end of the 14th over.

From there, however, Klaasen teed off. He hit two sixes off Varun Chakravarthy’s next over, with Abdul Samad chipping with two boundaries off Russell in the 17th. Klaasen then whacked another three sixes off Varun in the 18th to reduce the equation to 39 runs needed off the final two.

Mitchell Starc came on to bowl the penultimate, KKR hoping to close the game out with their death overs specialist. Klaasen had other ideas, however, He hit Starc’s first ball for a six off the inside half of his bat, just clearing the midwicket boundary. A dot and a wide followed before Klaasen launched back-to-back sixes over deep midwicket and deep extra cover. The second six brought up his 50 off just 25 balls.

After he finished the over with another six, over square leg this time, Sunrisers were in the box seat with only 13 needed off the final over. When Klaasen hit Hashit Rana for six off his first ball, the game looked done.

However, after a single put Shahbaz Ahmed on strike, the game changed again. Rana took two wickets in three balls. Shahbaz holed out to long on before a single put Klaasen on strike. Rana bowled a shorter ball outside the off stump which Klaasen edged and Suyash Sharma took a stunning catch at short third man. Klaasen was out for a superb 63 off 29 balls.

With five still needed, Sunrisers captain Pat Cummins came to the crease. Rana bowled another slower ball outside off which Cummins attempted to muscle to the boundary. He missed, and KKR sealed a thrilling victory by just four runs.