Published: Mon, May 07, 2018
Worldwide | By Stella Potter

IPL 2018 KXIP vs RR: Punjab wins toss; Rajasthan to bat first

IPL 2018 KXIP vs RR: Punjab wins toss; Rajasthan to bat first

Everything looks fine when you have it; you come back from the dead and win matches. Jofra Archer got the wicket of the risky Gayle in the fourth over with a scorching short ball and Ben Stokes sent back Agarwal in the fifth. Jos Buttler (51 off 39) fought a lonely battle as the KXIP bowlers snapped the Royals' partnerships at regular intervals and restricted them to 152/9 in 20 overs.

Krunal flicked Tye to the boundary off his first ball, and he and Sharma blew away Punjab to win with six balls to spare. Punjab somewhat squandered a great 54-run start by openers, before picking pace towards the end as Stoinis deposited Hardik Pandya for two sixes and as many fours to milk 22 runs off the final over. Buttler and Sanju Samson tried to rebuild but the latter fell after a 49-run stand.

Chris Gayle (180 points) - The "Universe Boss" has scored 252 runs in 4 games, including a knock of 104 against Sunrisers Hyderabad, a team that has the best bowling line-up in the tournament. Instead of charging down the track, Rahul waited for the ball to arrive and manoeuvred it according to the field placements. Axar Patel's promotion up the order didn't pay off for Punjab as he too departed cheaply for 4. Karun Nair, after a close call early on, showed some meticulous strokeplay. The lack of conclusive evidence worked in the batsman's favour.

McClenaghan managed just the one wicket. In the process, Rahul reached his seventh IPL fifty with an upper cut over third-man for six. And he justified that with a half-century. In their last match, they faced Mumbai Indians where the defending champion, MI got a victory. Samson, strong on the back-foot, was forced to play the pull after a short one by Andrew Tye.

However, Buttler looked unfazed by the departure of his fellow opener, and accounted for a majority of the 17 runs in the second over. He has a stellar record against fellow Trinidadian Evin Lewis across six innings: he has dismissed him four times in 32 balls, while only conceding 37 runs. The duo played risk-free cricket and constantly rotated strike to keep the scoreboard moving.

It was his unbroken fifth-wicket stand of 56 with skipper Rohit Sharma (24, 15b) that took Mumbai Indians to its third win of the season. However, Mujeeb had Mayank Agarwal plenty to thank for that wicket: an agile Mayank pouched the aerial ball on the long-off boundary and before he crossed the fence he threw the ball in the air for Manoj Tiwary to complete the catch.

However, the total was still not enough as once again Mumbai Indians rose from their losses and are now tied on six points with Delhi Daredevils, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals.

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