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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Turning Point: Rahul-Stoinis do the trick

Turning Point: Rahul-Stoinis do the trick

May 07, 2018 10:19 IST

IMAGE: Kings XI Punjab's K L Rahul, left, and Marcus Stoinis celebrate the team's victory against the Rajasthan Royals. Photograph: BCCI

After the Rajasthan Royals posted a modest 152 on the board, it was certain that Kings XI Punjab would chase down the target with ease.

But the chase was anything but easy.

Openers K L Rahul and Chris Gayle got off to a slow start with Krishnappa Gowtham and Jofra Archer bowling brilliant opening spells, giving away next to nothing.

 

Gayle stepped on the accelerator, but only just and was caught at point off Archer in the 4th over.

Mayank Agarwal came in next and got out for 2. At the other end, Rahul kept finding the runs.

In came Karun Nair and that was the start of a Kings fightback. Both Karnataka batsmen rotated the strike and getting boundaries.

Rahul and Karun mixed caution with aggression. After a 50 run partnership, Karun was bowled, handing Anureet Singh his first IPL wicket.

Axar Patel was the next to go and that brought Marcus Stoinis to the crease.

This is when Kings XI Punjab accelerated the innings, converting the singles into twos and getting the big shots every over.

In the 17th and 18th overs the Kings batsmen came close to the target, taking 18 runs off Archer and then 16 runs off Jaydev Unadkat with Rahul completing a half-century.

Rahul and Stonis stitched up an invaluable 68 run partnership to guide the team home to a comfortable 6 wicket victory.

Norma Godinho / Rediff.com