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Top Performers: PBKS Openers, Ellis Dazzle

April 06, 2023 06:58 IST

IMAGE: Nathan Ellis picked up a match-winning four wicket haul during Punjab Kings's thrilling win over the Rajasthan Royals. Photograph: BCCI

Punjab Kings had a hoard of match-winners as they clinched a second win on the trot in IPL 2023.

As the North East hosted its first IPL game, Punjab Kings handed Rajasthan Royals a five-run defeat in Guwahati on Wednesday, April 5, 2023.

While the Punjab openers set the stage alight with a solid opening stand, Nathan Ellis enjoyed a scintillating outing with the ball.

After being sent into bat at the Barsapara stadium in Guwahati, Punjab openers put up a strong show with the willow to put the visitors in the driver's seat early in the game.

The opening pair frustrated the Royals bowlers as they put up a sizzling stand of 90 off 58 for the first wicket.

The young Prabhsimran Singh took early control as he raced to his maiden IPL half-century.

The 22 year old hammered the Royals bowlers mercilessly around the park as he brought up his half-century off just 28 deliveries.

Skipper Shikhar Dhawan enjoyed the best seat in the house as Prabhsimran played a sizzling 34-ball 60. Striking at a rate of 176.47, Prabhsimran's innings was studded with seven boundaries and three sixes.

While the opener dominated the powerplay, Dhawan, who was playing a quiet knock, stepped on the pedal after Singh fell in the 10th over.

The Punjab skipper hammered an unbeaten 56-ball 86 to guide the visitors to a challenging total.

Dhawan's innings was peppered with nine boundaries and three maximums. It was a special occasion as Dhawan became only the third player after David Warner and Virat Kohli to score fifty 50+ scores in the IPL.

With a challenging score on the board, Arshdeep Singh kept Punjab in control with two early wickets. But the standout bowler for Punjab was Nathan Ellis.

Ellis returned with four crucial wickets to keep the strong Royals batting line up in check. Ellis picked up the prize scalps of Jos Buttler, RR Skipper Sanju Samson, local lad Riyan Parag and Devdutt Padikkal.

While Ellis's four-wicket haul was crucial for Punjab, Sam Curran -- IPL's most expensive overseas recruit -- justified his price tag as he successfully defended 15 in the final over.

Ellis, who led the bowling attack, was adjudged the player-of-the-match.