Punjab Kings have registered their third win in the Indian Premier League after thumping Mumbai Indians in a ruthless manner. Not only have they batted cohesively, but their bowlers also managed to make a comeback strongly after Dewald Brevis hit Rahul Chahar for 29 runs in one over. Mumbai virtually held the game in their kitty and one more good over before the death overs kicked in could have finished the game but the way Punjab held their nerves was deserving of the highest praise.
Batting-wise, Punjab also put up a very admirable performance, with skipper Mayank Agarwal leading the way with a 32-ball 52 and he established a 97-run opening partnership with Shikhar Dhawan, who scored 70 runs himself. Later on, in the innings, Jitesh Sharma and Shahrukh Khan provided the impetus to ensure that Punjab finished with a total to win them the game.
Agarwal applauded the approach, stating that they are smarter in the way they batted on Wednesday night.
“At the start of the tournament, we said that's the brand of cricket we want to play. We want to play aggressive, hard cricket, and with that, we need to show good intent. I think this time around we were a lot smarter with the bat as well,” Agarwal said in the post-match presentation.
“So we showed great intent but we were a lot smarter so that we could keep wickets in hand and use the death as well. I thought in the last game against Gujarat, we gave wickets to Rashid when it wasn't required. But this time we were a lot more aware and careful. We made sure to not give wickets to their main bowlers and if it's your day, you have to take the team through. It can get hard.”
Agarwal further lauded the way Rahul Chahar made a comeback despite being taken to the cleaners by Dewald Brevis. He gave away 15 runs in three overs after conceding 29 runs in the first three and Agarwal feels that attitude will make a difference.
"Credit to Brevis for the way he took on Rahul and got the better of him, but then a great comeback from Rahul as well. After that one over, the other three overs he bowled were tight. Obviously, when Tilak and Brevis were going the way they were going, we had to change our strategy and get into the main bowlers to try to get a wicket and luckily that happened through a runout.
"We don't rely on just Rabada, yes he leads the attack for us but we have two other guys to come and do that. It's nice and very happy to have three wins. I think we're playing good cricket overall and if we get 5-10% better every game, I think we'll go on to do special things," Agarwal concluded.