Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) registered a comfortable victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) by 6 wickets in Mohali on Monday, April 8.
Punjab won the toss and elected to field first. Asked to bat first, Sunrisers Hyderabad were expecting a steady start from their openers David Warner and Jonny Bairstow. But like the last game, Jonny Bairstow failed to contribute; where their middle order too crumbled under pressure.
Warner, however, stayed at the other end and scored an unbeaten 70. Along with him, Deepak Hooda scored a 3-ball 14 and helped Hyderabad to reach 150-4 after 20 overs.
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) April 8, 2019
Chasing the total, Punjab also lost their dangerous opener, Chris Gayle, very cheaply. But a steady 114-run partnership guided them to another victory over Hyderabad.
Here are the three talking points from the game:
A rather slow start of Hyderabad
Put into bat, Hyderabad were hoping for a flying start which they are accustomed to. But Mujeeb Ur Rahman’s carrom ball didn’t let that happen. He picked up the in-form Jonny Bairstow in the very second over when Ravichandran Ashwin took a brilliant well-judged low catch at mid-wicket; which sent Bairstow in the dugout for 1 off 6.
Then Vijay Shankar and David Warner tried to steady the ship but they only managed 27 runs in the powerplay due to their defensive game. They never tried to accelerate the innings and added only 50 runs after 10 overs. However, that slow start affected their score in the death overs as well, apart from the final over; where a 3-ball 14 powered Hyderabad to a decent competitive total after 20 overs.
KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal’s second-wicket partnership
Chasing 151, Chris Gayle was the first wicket which Punjab lost. He was dismissed very cheaply for 16. Later, KL Rahul started building the partnership with Mayank Agarwal. Both of them took on the bowlers and reached the 100-run mark in the 13th over.
Both of them started hitting all over the park and it became difficult for the bowlers to dismiss them. Rahul reached his half-century in the final ball of the 13th over while Agarwal reached in the 17th over. However, Agarwal got out after scoring 55 off 43, including 3 boundaries and as many over-boundaries.
On the other hand, KL Rahul remained unbeaten at 71 off 53, including 7 boundaries and a six. Their 114-run partnership helped Punjab to register their fourth win of this season.
The final over
Punjab were always in a driving seat during their chase against Hyderabad. They were needed mere 32 runs to claim another win from four overs with nine wickets in their hand. Then they thought to score more quickly and managed 13 runs in the 17th over; which brought the equation to 19 off 18 balls. This has become so easy nowadays in Twenty20 games.
But Hyderabad had some other plans. Sandeep Sharma came to bowl in the 18th over where he dismissed Mayank Agarwal and David Miller, conceding mere three runs. The penultimate over was bowled by Siddarth Kaul; who bowled an excellent over and gave away five runs and took up Mandeep Singh as well. Both of their spells gave Mohammed Nabi to defend 10 runs in the final over.
However, Kings XI Punjab managed to win the game with one ball to spare.