Spectacular half centuries from Chris Gayle & Mandeep Singh helped KXIP to hail a comfortable eight wickets win over KKR at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Monday.
With sheer determination & hardwork KXIP has moved up to the top-half of the eight team table after displacing KKR from the fourth spot. Chasing an average target of 150 runs, KL Rahul & Mandeep Singh gave their team a power-pack start adding 47 runs for the opening wicket. KKR’s spinner Varun Chakravarthy celebrated his maiden call-up to the Indian team by trapping KL Rahul & giving his team a crucial breakthrough. After that Gayle & Mandeep together stitched a solid partnership in the middle of the game & turned the game towards KXIP’s favor by putting a perfect 100 runs partnership for the second wicket.
Gayle’s aggressive approach allowed Mandeep to settle on the field & build up his innings & the batsman who lost his father on last Friday did so very well by scoring unbeaten 66 runs off 56 balls. Earlier KXIP won the toss & opted to field first. Morgan’s team suffered a major setback when they lost Nitish Rana just on the second ball of the innings for a duck. He got out after trying to sweep a Glenn Maxwell delivery but ended up hitting it straight into the hands of Gayle. The poor start of their performance comtinued further as they lost Rahul tripathi & Dinehs Karthik in Mohammed Shami’s first over. After that Shubman Gill & Morgan led KKR’s batting show as they finished at 54/3.
Shubman hit four sixes in 57 runs knock while Morgan managed to hit only two sixes at a much higher strike rate than his partner at the other end. However KXIP’s Ravi Bishnoi ended the dangerous partnership of the duo right in the 10th over by sending Morgan back to the pavilion who had scored just 40 runs off 25 balls. After Morgan’s dismissal KXIP bowlers dominated the game & stopped KKR’s run flow through restricted bowling forcing batters into committing mistakes. Barring Ferguson all the lower order batsmen caused figure for KKR & they were restricted to a below par total of 149/9 in just 20 overs.
Mohammed Shami emerged as the star bowler for KXIP as he returned with figures of 3/35 in the fourth over while Chris Jordan & Ravi Bishnoi picked up two wickets each.