It’s match 46 in the IPL, and it’s a big match today. KKR takes on KXIP for what’s possibly going to be the battle for the 4th spot on the table. KXIP are coming from a four-match winning streak and are only two points behind KKR. KL Rahul won the toss for the KXIP and elected to field first. Both the team were unchanged from their previous match.
Another Rocky start for the KKR
KKR openers have struggled to provide the team with a start in the past few matches, and the same happened today. Maxwell removed Nitish Rana on the second ball of the innings. This was followed by a double-wicket over by Shami, who dismissed Tripathi and Kartik. KKR were 10/3 after the end of the first two overs.
KKR started to rebuild their innings under Captain Morgan and Gill. Quick wickets did force Morgan to take a step backward. Shami, the wrecker-in-chief, charged in for a third over in the powerplay, was whacked by Morgan and Shubman Gill for 21 runs. After the end of the powerplay, KKR was 54/3.
Morgan and Gill continued with their onslaught before Morgan was dismissed by Bishnoi. Morgan who was looking for a second six off Bishnoi handed a catch to M Ashwin at deep backward square leg.
Sunil Narine who came out to replace Morgan in the middle was dismissed in the 11th over by Chris Jordan. Meanwhile, on the other hand, Shubman Gill completed his half-century. KKR were 114 for 6 after the end of 15 overs.
KKR were hopeful for some big-hitting by Cummins in the last over. However, the plans were ruined by Bishnoi who bowled a wicket maiden 16th over, taking the wicket of Cummins in the process.
A cameo by Lockie Ferguson of 24 runs in 13 balls helped KKR post a total of 149 for 9 at the end of their Innings.
KXIP start slow and steady.
The opening duo of Rahul and Mandeep Singh played some sensible cricket at the beginning of the KXIP innings. KXIP were 36 for no loss after the end of the powerplay.
Just when things were going good for the KXIP, Varun Chakravarthy dismissed KL Rahul. The newest introduction to the Indian squad trapped the Kings XI captain in front of the stumps for an LBW.
Gayle came in at number 3 for the KXIP. Gayle is usually known to take a few balls to settle down, however, today was different, Striking two consecutive sixes off Varun Chakravarthy, just after his first 3 balls. He followed it up with a six of Narine. After the end of the 14 overs, KXIP were 104 for 1. With Mandeep Singh at 39 off 41 balls and Gayle at 35 off 18 balls.
Mandeep Singh went on to complete his half-century. Singh pointed up to the sky to pay tribute to his father who recently passed away.
Gayle and Singh went on to put a Centurian partnership leading KXIP to the victory. Gayle completed his fifty in just 25 balls. He was however dismissed by Lockie Ferguson on the first ball of the 19th over.
KXIP went on to complete the run-chase with 7 balls spare. A five-match win-streak and a net run-rate better than the KKR means that KXIP is now fourth in the IPL standings.
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