Kolkata Knight Riders wicket-keeper Dinesh Karthik took a stunning one-handed diving catch to put an end to Ben Stokes’ innings and turned the match towards KKR against Rajasthan Royals in an IPL 2020 match in Dubai on Sunday.
The dangerous Ben Stokes had been the match-winner for Rajasthan Royals in the two games for Rajasthan Royals before Sunday. The allrounder smashed an unbeaten hundred to help RR to pick up a win over Mumbai Indians and then hammered a 26-ball fifty to take his side to a 7-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab.
Facing off against Kolkata Knight Riders in a do-or-die contest on Sunday, Stokes was RR’s key player, and he needed to deliver his best to help his side chase down the mammoth total of 192 in Dubai.
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In the first over from KKR pacer Pat Cummins, Stokes scooped a fuller delivery for a sweet six. It was a sensational shot that left KKR bowlers stunned, as they wondered how to control the England star.
But luckily for KKR, Stokes did not last long as in Cummins’ next over, the batsman nicked a wide one to Dinesh Karthik. It was not an easy catch as it was moving away from the keeper towards his left side. But Karthik jumped wide and plucked the ball from mid-air with one hand.
WATCH: Dinesh Karthik’s one-handed stunner to dismiss Ben Stokes
Reacting to Karthik’s catch former Sri Lanka wicket-keeper batsman Kumar Sangakkara said : “Ben Stokes couldn’t believe it and neither can we in the commentary box.”
Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan compared Karthik to a bird. “We’ve seen birds on the cricket ground only in Australia… there’s one that flew in the UAE just now … what a catch,” tweeted Iran Pathan.
The dismissal led to the breakdown of RR’s top order as they were left reeling at 37/5 with Cummins taking four wickets.
In the end, KKR restricted RR to 131 for 9, winning the match comfortably by 60 runs. This happened after they had put on 191 for 7 batting first.
KKR’s big win improved their net run rate significantly and knocked out Rajasthan Royals from IPL 2020.