Images from Friday’s IPL match between Kings XI Punjab and Kolkata Knight Riders, in Mohali.
Shubman Gill showed maturity beyond years to guide Kolkata Knight Riders to a seven-wicket victory over Kings XI Punjab in the IPL match, in Mohali, on Friday.
The victory took the Knight Riders to 12 points, the same as Sunrisers Hyderabad, and kept them in the race for a play-offs berth.
Kings XI Punjab (10 points) bowed out of contention.
In pursuit of a 184 target, the 19-year-old Gill displayed his range on his 'home turf' with an attractive 65 not out off 49 balls, anchoring the chase after Chris Lynn (46 off 22 balls) set the pace with some big hits in the Powerplay overs.
Not only did KKR reach the target in 18 overs, but they also improved their net run-rate, ahead of their must-win away game against Mumbai Indians left.
The opening duo of Lynn and Gill added 62 in six overs before the former was dismissed after hitting five fours and two sixes.
Robin Uthappa (22, 14 balls) looked good but did not stay long enough, even as Gill, who hit five fours and two sixes, carried on with minimum fuss.
Andre Russell (24 off 14 balls) hit a couple of sixes in a 50-run stand with Gill in only 4.2 overs to cut the chase short.
However, Gill's batting was a treat for the eyes as he literally toyed with KXIP skipper Ravichandran Ashwin, hitting him for 18 runs in an over. There was a six over long-on, when he came down the track, and another slog sweep behind square.
The half-century came with a deft late cut which prompted his happy father to break into the bhangra.
In the end, skipper Dinesh Karthik (21 off 9 balls) finished off the match with a flourish.
Earlier, Sam Curran and Nicholas Pooran displayed remarkable T20 temperament to guide the Kings to a respectable 183 for 6 in a must-win IPL game for both teams.
While West Indian batsman Pooran hammered 48 off 27 balls to give the innings initial impetus in a 69-run partnership for the third wicket with Mayank Agarwal (36 off 26 balls), Englishman Curran walloped the Kolkata bowlers, smashing an unbeaten 55 off 24 balls, to take the score past the 180-run mark.
For KKR, fast bowler Sandeep Warrier (2/31) was the most impressive. He removed the opening pair of Chris Gayle (14 off 14 balls) and Lokesh Rahul (2 off 7 balls) in quick succession.
However, Pooran again displayed his big-hitting prowess, hitting four sixes, apart from three boundaries, as he found an able partner in Agarwal.
Pooran was unlucky to miss out on a fifty as he was caught in the deep mid-wicket region trying to hit a Nitish Rana half-tracker for six.
Once Agarwal, and later Mandeep Singh (25), got out, it seemed Kings would have to settle for less than 170. However, Curran had other ideas as 32 runs came off the last two overs.
In the 19th over, Curran hit Andre Russell for a couple of boundaries, before launching into countrymate Harry Gurney, hitting him for 22 runs, which included three fours and a big six. He finished with seven fours and two sixes.