Kings XI Punjab pull off fifth win in a row

2014-04-29 00:00

IT is five from five for the Kings XI Punjab after they demolished the Royal Challengers Bangalore by five wickets in their IPL match yesterday.

It was more nervous than it looked, especially when three big hitters, Glenn Maxwell, David Miller and Virender Sehwag were back in the hut with the score on 88/5, chasing 125.

From such a weak base, the Challengers put up a valiant fight, although they were given a very generous decision for the caught-behind dismissal of Virender, on 32, off legspinner Yuzvenra Chahal.

That was Chahal’s second wicket in the over, having legitimately had Miller similarly caught for 26 off 20.

The South African slugger was picking up the baton after Maxwell was superbly caught by a diving Mitchell Starc on the boundary, pulling Varun Aaron. Starc had minutes earlier reached high to dismiss Wriddhiman Saha, off Aaron’s over.

But George Bailey and Rishi Dhawan stayed calm and eased the Kings XI to win with an over to spare.

Punjab paceman Sandeep Sharma had taken two huge wickets in three balls in the second over of the day to undermine the Challengers’ innings.

All the talk at the toss was about the return of superstar Chris Gayle, who sat out the first four matches with a back injury, and who watched his team slip after a good start to the season to two dramatic losses.

He edged the first ball from offspinner Glenn Maxwell for four off a big heave, swiped another four and then drove two mighty sixes to rack up 20 run off the first over. He danced out and drove down the wrong lane, the stumps shattered behind him.

By the end of the fourth over, the Challengers were 26/4. Sandeep claimed Virat Kohli leg before.

AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh set about repairing the damage. They put on 41 off 33 balls, when De Villiers slapped an easy catch to backward point off Rishi Dhawan’s second ball for 17.

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