Monday , 23 September 2019
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K L Rahul hit an unbeaten 71 to help Kings XI Punjab register a six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in Mohali on Monday

‘King’ Rahul stays firm as Punjab stop rising Hyderabad

Mohali: K L Rahul and Mayank Agarwal struck fluent half-centuries to guide Kings XI Punjab to a six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in a nail-biting Indian Premier League match here Monday.

Opting to bat, Kings XI first restricted Sunrisers to 150 for four and then rode on Rahul and Agarwal’s knocks to chase down the target in 19.5 overs.

Rahul (71 not out) and Agarwal (55) stitched 114 runs off 84 balls for the second wicket to take Kings XI close to the target.

Chasing 151 for a win, Kings XI lost dangerous Chris Gayle (16) in the fourth over with their scoreboard reading 18. Gayle struck a four and a six before Deepak Hooda took a brilliant catch at long-on boundary off Rashid Khan’s (1/20) bowling to send the West Indian back to the pavilion.

Rahul and Agarwal then complemented each other brilliantly as the duo mixed caution with aggression to literally take the game away from Sunrisers.

While Rahul reached his half century off 34 balls, Agarwal departed soon after reaching his fifty while going for a big shot. He was caught by Vijay Shankar at deep midwicket off Sandeep Sharma and four balls later Miller to was dismissed by the pacer as the left-hander went for an expansive shot.

Kings XI needed 16 runs off the last two overs and the pressure got the better of new man Mandeep Singh, caught by Hooda off Siddharth Kaul’s brilliant penultimate over that yielded just five runs.

The pressure shifted to Kings XI in no time as they needed 11 runs off the last over off Nabi but Sam Curran (5 not out) and Rahul played sensibly without committing any harakiri to reach home with a ball to spare.

Earlier, David Warner struck his fourth fifty of the season before Hooda played a cameo in the final over to lift Sunrisers to a challenging 150 for four.

Warner struck six boundaries and one six during his knock, but it was Hooda who stole the limelight, smashing Mohammed Shami for two fours and one hit over the fence to pick up vital 15 runs off the last over.

Warner was not his elements Monday as he struggled to his fifty off 49 balls with the help of four boundaries and one six.

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