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Sunday, June 16, 2024
HomeCricketSlow pitching and accurate bowling from the Punjab Kings allow the Rajasthan...

Slow pitching and accurate bowling from the Punjab Kings allow the Rajasthan Royals to win three wickets

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The bowlers from Punjab Kings, who skilfully controlled the pace of the ball on a sticky field, presented a challenge to the Rajasthan Royals, but they managed to survive three wickets at much effort.

Rajasthan Royals labored against Punjab Kings bowlers who took the pace off the ball cleverly on a sticky track, but they managed to pull out a tough three-wicket win in their IPL 2024 match in Mullanpur on Saturday. The goal appeared to be a straightforward 148, but a trio of spot-on Punjab bowlers and a slippery wicket made the Royals’ task difficult before they reached 152 for seven. Despite having power-hitters like Rovman Powell (11, 5b) and Shimron Hetmyer (27 not out, 10b, 1×4, 3×6) in its ranks, the Rajasthan team needed 49 runs off the final five overs and had to wait till the penultimate ball of the match to cross the line.

After Hetmyer mowed down Harshal Patel for a six and four in the last over, the West Indian left-hander realized that equation was down to 10 off the next six balls. He did this by hitting two sixes off bowler Arshdeep Singh.

With little real pressure on the scoreboard, the Royals started their chase of Tanush Kotian and Yashasvi Jaiswal in a calm manner.

Despite not finding his rhythm, Kotian, who was batting so high in the order for the first time in T20s, helped Jaiswal add 56 runs in 8.2 overs despite this.

But in the process of trying to pound Liam Livingstone into the ground, he managed to lose his leg stump.

Harshal Patel, however, snatched a somewhat unnecessary uppercut off Rabada close to third man as Rajasthan appeared a little unsteady.

The captain Sanju Samson, who had previously broken the manacles with a six and four off Livingstone, was trapped leg-before by Rabada in his final over, adding to their misery.

Rabada’s slightly off-centred delivery eluded Samson, and even the DRS was unable to stop it from pinging his backside.

Earlier, Rajasthan bowlers Avesh (2/34) and Maharaj (2/23) took advantage of a sloppy pitch to their advantage, limiting Punjab Kings to a lackluster score.

Punjab required more than those brief cameos from Ashutosh Sharma (31, 16b), Jitesh Sharma (29, 24b), and Livingstone (21, 14b) to push the pace.

However, the Kings got off to a relatively early start to their innings as Atharva Taide, who replaced injured captain Shikhar Dhawan, hit two fours off pacer Kuldeep Sen, scoring 26 runs in the opening three overs.

However, Sen quickly hit the brakes when Taide’s ill-advised pull off Avesh ended in his hands inside the circle.

Following that, the Punjab batsmen found it difficult to get any kind of momentum on a pitch that was a little bit tight, particularly for leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal and left-arm spinner Maharaj.

Trent Boult, a seasoned pacer, deserves some of the credit as well, since he gave up just 15 runs in his three power play overs.

The Kings finished that section on a respectable 38 for one, scoring just 10 runs in the final three power play overs.

The combination of a sluggish surface and accurate spinners destroyed Jonny Bairstow, Prabhsimran Singh, and stand-in skipper Sam Curran in the next five overs as the hosts laboured to 53 for four in 10 overs, unable to score even a single boundary.

The in-form Shahshank Singh’s ability to strike at range may have been their best chance, but even a weak draw off Sen prevented them from reaching Jurel at mid-wicket.

It took a strong hand from Livingstone and Jitesh for PBKS to reach even a par score because the top players were unable to make a meaningful contribution.

In the extra over, Sharma demonstrated his purpose by clobbering Chahal with a well timed six. Later, he dispatched Sen for a six to the straight boundary before going out to Avesh.

Though their effort came a little bit late, Livingstone and Ashutosh helped PBKS score 61 runs in the final five overs. Livingstone creamed Sen for a six and four off successive balls through mid-wicket, while Ashutosh smoked Avesh for two sixes in the 19th over.

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