KL Rahul once again shows his prowess at the top of the batting order, scoring 52 off 47 as Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) overcome Rajasthan Royals (RR) by 12 runs in Match 32 of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 at Mohali. Their bowlers, led by Ravichandran Ashwin (2 for 24) managed to tighten the screws, despite RR setting up an excellent platform, thanks to a 59-run second wicket stand between Rahul Tripathi (50) and Sanju Samson (27). Ashton Turner, who was making his IPL debut was dismissed for a golden duck. Incidentally, this was his third consecutive duck in T20 cricket.
After a steady second wicket stand, the fact that started losing wickets at regular intervals did not help them either as KXIP clawed their way back into the game to record an impressive victory. RR needed 50 runs from the remaining three overs and Mohammed Shami immediately removed Jofra Archer in the first ball off the 18th over . Stuart Binny used the long handle and threatened for a bit. Ajinkya Rahane, who demoted himself to No. 4 failed to get any sort of momentum going and in the end perished for a 21-ball 26 with 35 more required off 9 balls. It was KXIP’s to lose from there and despite a couple of big blows in the end by Binny, RR, who needed 23 off the final over, managed just 10 in the end.
With this win, KXIP climb into the top 4 with 10 points from 9 matches, while RR remain in the seventh place with 4 points from 8 games.
KXIP have an attacking shot% of 36 in the powerplays in 2019, which is the least among all the teams. Rahul
too started off extremely slowly. In fact he scored his first boundary in his 28th
ball – 12th over of the innings. But in the next 19 balls, he
managed to 31 runs and eventually scored 52 off 47 balls, which is his fourth
50-plus score in the last five innings. This is Rahul’s second worst boundary%
(3.12) after 10 overs of his team’s innings. Previous worst was against MI
(2.99) at Wankhade couple of matches ago, where he eventually ended up scoring
Chris Gayle managed to find some form early, hitting a couple of fours and three sixes to score a 22-ball 30, but despite that, KXIP managed just 30 in the powerplay, but ensured that they did not lose a single wicket. In fact, in 2019 after CSK (16.20) and RCB (18.86), KXIP have the worst boundary% (18.91) in the powerplays.
For RR, Archer was the pick of their bowlers, finishing with figures of 3 for 15, getting wickets of Gayle, Nicholas Pooran and Mandeep Singh. However, Ravichandran Ashwin surprised everyone with his strokeplay scoring 17 off 4 balls, which included three boundaries to take KXIP to a competitive score of 182 for 6. In 2019, RR has the worst Eco rate 10.76 at death, which is the worst among all teams. Today, they conceded 46 runs at the death, which is slightly better than their average economy rate this season.
Moises Henriques was set to make his debut for KXIP in this match. After receiving his cap, he injured himself just before the toss and as a result missed out. He was supposed to replace Nicholas Pooran.
In the sixth over of the KXIP innings, Archer got rid of Gayle, which reduced their win% by 13 - their lowest dip in the innings - and stood at 35. However, with Rahul going steady and David Miller playing some big shots, KXIP’s winning chances went up and by the end of the 15th over, their win% was 71.
Talking about RR, when Ashwin got the wicket of Tripathi in the 16th over RR’s win% dipped by 14 and their win% at that point was just 12. Despite Binny’s cameo in the end, RR could not get over the line.
For more such insights, check out the Criclytics engine of our website.