Kings XI Punjab continued their winning spree, now five on the bounce, as the KL Rahul-led outfit humbled Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets with seven balls to spare in Sharjah on Monday. And the stars were Mandeep Singh (66* off 56), who lost his father a few days back, legendary Chris Gayle (52 off 29) and bowlers - Mohammed Shami (3/35), Chris Jordan (2/25) and Ravi Bishnoi (2/20). So, all in all, one concerted team effort to drive home their title credentials. The win helped KXIP jumped to fourth place in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 points table with 12 points from 12 outings. One would wonder, if not for those close defeats... For KKR, it was a game of catch-up, always. Put into bat, the two-time champions were down three inside the first two overs. Skipper Eoin Morgan and ever-impressive Shubman Gill scored crucial runs, 40 and 57, respectively to give the total some respectability. But it didn't prove enough. They are now fifth in the points table. ( SCORECARD | POINTS TABLE | SCHEDULE & RESULTS)
Kings XI Punjab Won By Eight Wickets
10:58 PM IST: Lockie Ferguson on with his final over. And got the wicket of Chris Gayle off the first ball. Caught by Prasidh Krishna. Gayle made 51 off 29. New man Nicholas Pooran hit the winning run, a single, off the fifth ball. Kings XI Punjab won the match by eight wickets. Five on the bounce. Punjab - 150/2 (18.5); Mandeep Singh 66 off 56, Nicholas Pooran 2 off 3.
10:52 PM IST: Pat Cummins returned for his last over. Mandeep Singh hit the fourth ball for a four, a fine cover drive, and followed it up with a six off the last ball. 11 runs from the over. Punjab - 147/1 (18); Mandeep Singh 65, Chris Gayle 51.
10:47 PM IST: Lockie Ferguson on with his third over. Chris Gayle hit the first ball for a four, then followed it up with a six over long long-off. A dot, and a single as Gayle reached fifty in 25 balls. And the BOSS bat again! 13 runs from the over. Punjab - 136/1 (17); Mandeep Singh 55, Chris Gayle 50.
10:40 PM IST: Prasidh Krishna returned for his third over. Mandeep Singh reached fifty with a single off the fourth ball. A special knock and he dedicated it to his late father, who passed away few days back. 10 runs from the over. Punjab - 123/1 (16); Mandeep Singh 54, Chris Gayle 39.
10:35 PM IST: Varun Chakravarthy on with his final over. Mandeep Singh hit the first ball for a four, to extra cover. Nine runs from the over. Chakravarthy's figures - 1/34. Punjab - 113/1 (15); Mandeep Singh 45, Chris Gayle 38.
10:29 PM IST: Lockie Ferguson continued. A single off the first ball as Mandeep Singh played to third man. And fifty run stand with Chris Gayle in 31 balls. Eight runs from the over. Punjab - 104/1 (14); Mandeep Singh 39, Chris Gayle 35.
10:26 PM IST: Sunil Narine on with his final over. Chris Gayle hit the third over for a six, over deep midwicket. 10 runs from the over. Narine's figures - 0/27. Punjab - 96/1 (13); Mandeep Singh 34, Chris Gayle 34.
10:22 PM IST: Bowling change. Lockie Ferguson, right arm pacer, on. Mandeep Singh hit the first ball for a four, then another by Chris Gayle off the fifth. 10 runs from the over. Punjab - 86/1 (12); Mandeep Singh 33, Chris Gayle 25.
10:18 PM IST: Sunil Narine on with his third over. Chris Gayle hit the last ball of the over for a six. Nine runs from the over. Punjab - 76/1 (11); Mandeep Singh 28, Chris Gayle 20.
10:15 PM IST: Varun Chakravarthy on with his third over. Chris Gayle hit him for back-to-back sixes, off the last two balls. Before that Mandeep Singh hit the second ball for a four. 17 runs from the over. Punjab - 67/1 (10); Mandeep Singh 26, Chris Gayle 13.
10:11 PM IST: Sunil Narine continued. Three singles. 29 runs and one wicket in the last five overs as KKR dominate the proceedings. Punjab - 50/1 (9); Mandeep Singh 21, Chris Gayle 1.
10:07 PM IST: Varun Chakravarthy got the wicket of KL Rahul (28 off 25). LBW. Chris Gayle is the new man. Punjab - 47/1 (8); Mandeep Singh 19, Chris Gayle 0.
10:00 PM IST: Double bowling change. Sunil Narine, off spinner on. Three singles and a double. Punjab - 41/0; KL Rahul 23, Mandeep Singh 18.
9:56 PM IST: Bowling change. Varun Chakravarthy, leg spinner, on. Fine start from the youngster. Just two singles. Punjab - 36/0; KL Rahul 19, Mandeep Singh 17.
9:52 PM IST: Pat Cummins on with his third over. Mandeep Singh hit the first ball for a six, over mid wicket. A dot, then Mandeep just survived a run out, returning for the second. He pulled the next ball for a four. 13 runs from the over. Punjab - 34/0; KL Rahul 18, Mandeep Singh 16.
9:47 PM IST: Prasidh Krishna continued, and hit for back-to-back fours by KL Rahul. Two dots, and a quick single. Mandeep Singh will keep the strike as he played the last ball for a single to mid off. Punjab - 21/0; KL Rahul 18, Mandeep Singh 3.
9:42 PM IST: Pat Cummins continued. Three dots, then a single as Mandeep Singh played the fourth ball to mid-off. Another single, then a dot. Mandeep's struggling. Punjab - 11/0; KL Rahul 9, Mandeep Singh 2.
9:38 PM IST: Prasidh Krishna, who let slipped the ball for a four off in the first over, shared the new ball with Pat Cummins. Singles of the first and fifth ball, then a double. Four runs from the over. Punjab - 9/0; KL Rahul 8, Mandeep Singh 1.
9:34 PM IST: Pat Cummins with the new ball. KL Rahul hit the first ball for a four, to backward point. Three dots, then a single. Mandeep Singh blocked the last ball. Punjab - 5/0; KL Rahul 5, Mandeep Singh 0.
9:22 PM IST: And first reactions to the team announcement. Sunil Gavaskar while hailing KL Rahul's stature as a leader, has said that India need Rohit Sharma in Tests to open. The legend also praised Varun Chakravarthy.
9:20 PM IST: Big news for the Indian cricket team. Rohit Sharma to miss the tour of Australia. The BCCI announced all three teams for the Australia series. Here are the teams:
T20I Squad: Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul (vice-captain and wicket-keeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, Varun Chakravarthy
ODI Squad: Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul (vice-captain & wicket-keeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Mayank Agarwal, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur.
Test Squad: Virat Kohli (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Mohd. Siraj.
Kolkata Innings; Toss - Punjab
9:16 PM IST: Chris Jordan with the last over. He cleaned up Varun Chakravarthy with the fifth ball. And nothing more as last man Prasidh Krishna failed to touch the ball. Five runs from the over. Kolkata - 149/9 (19); Lockie Ferguson 24, Prasidh Krishna 0.
9:10 PM IST: Mohammed Shami returned for his last over. A single, then denied a single. But that's all for Shubman Gill. He holed out, caught by Nicholas Poorna. Out for 57 off 45. Varun Chakravarthy, who just got a national call-up, joined Lockie Ferguson in the centre. The Kiwi, who was denied the strike by Gill earlier in the over, smacked the fifth ball for a six off the fifth ball. A leg bye to end the 19th over. Nine from it. Shami's figures - 3/35. Kolkata - 144/8 (19); Lockie Ferguson 22, Varun Chakravarthy 1.
9:04 PM IST: Chris Jordan returned for his third over. Lockie Ferguson hit the first two balls for fours, then a single. Shubman Gill survived a close LBW shout. Full toss and probably hitting the leg stump. No review left for either side. Two singles to end the over. 11 runs from it. Kolkata - 135/7 (18); Shubman Gill 57, Lockie Ferguson 15.
8:59 PM IST: Murugan Ashwin on with his last over. Lockie Ferguson and Shubman Gill hit fours off the fourth and sixth balls respectively. Ten runs from the over. Ashwin's figures: 1/27. Kolkata - 124/7 (17); Shubman Gill 56, Lockie Ferguson 5.
8:55 PM IST: Ravi Bishnoi on with his last over. Two dots and Punjab wasted the review as the bowler managed to convince his skipper. But Bishnoi got a lucky call from the umpire the very next ball. Delivery missing the left stump by some distance and still given LBW. Cummins made 1 off 8. Lockie Ferguson, the new man, blocked the next ball before taking a single. One run and a wicket from the over. Bishnoi's figures - 2/20. Kolkata - 115/7 (16); Shubman Gill 51, Lockie Ferguson 1.
Meanwhile, India's India's T20I squad for the Australia tour is announced. Here's the team: Kohli (c), Dhawan, Agarwal, KL Rahul (vc & wk), Iyer, Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Samson (wk), Jadeja, Sundar, Chahal, Bumrah, Shami, Saini, Deepak Chahar, Varun Chakravarthy.
8:50 PM IST: WICKET! A dot, then Murugan Ashwin cleaned up Kamlesh Nagarkoti (6 off 13). New man, Pat Cummins, blocked the next three balls. A single off the last ball. A wicket and one run from the over. Kolkata - 114/6 (15); Shubman Gill 51, Pat Cummins 1.
8:46 PM IST: Ravi Bishnoi on with his third over. A dot, then a single to Shubman Gill. A double, then a single as Gill returned to strike on 49. And another fifty for Gill with a double, in 36 balls. Six runs from the over. Kolkata - 113/5 (14); Shubman Gill 51, Kamlesh Nagarkoti 6.
8:40 PM IST: Murugan Ashwin returned for his second over. Three dots to Kamlesh Nagarkoti, then a single to cover. Another single, and TIME OUT. Kolkata - 107/5 (13); Shubman Gill 48, Kamlesh Nagarkoti 3.
8:37 PM IST: Ravi Bishnoi continued. Four singles. Kolkata - 105/5 (12); Shubman Gill 47, Kamlesh Nagarkoti 2.
8:33 PM IST: WICKET! Chris Jordan continued. Sunil Narine hit the fifth ball for a four, then a wide for height. And the reload got the wicket. Narine dragged on. Nine runs and a wicket. Kolkata - 101/5 (11); Shubman Gill 45.
8:26 PM IST: Bowling change. Ravi Bishnoi on with his leg spin. Two singles, then a six over long-on by Shubman Gill. A single to rotate the strike, and WICKET. Eoin Morgan caught at deep by Murugan Ashwin. Morgan made 40 off 25. New man, Sunil Narine, joined Gill. 10 runs and a wicket from the over. Kolkata - 92/4 (10); Shubman Gill 44, Sunil Narine 0.
8:21 PM IST: Another bowling change. Chris Jordan on with his right-arm medium pace. Tidy one. Just two singles. Kolkata - 82/3 (9); Shubman Gill 35, Eoin Morgan 39.
8:16 PM IST: Bowling change. Murugan Ashwin, leg spinner, on. Eoin Morgan lofted the third ball over long on for a six. Shubman Gill finished the over with a six, over deep mid-wicket. 14 runs from the over. Kolkata - 80/3 (8); Shubman Gill 34, Eoin Morgan 38.
8:09 PM IST: Glenn Maxwell returned for his second over. And leaked 12 runs, including a four and a six, both hit by Eoin Morgan. Kolkata - 66/3 (7); Shubman Gill 27, Eoin Morgan 31.
8:06 PM IST: Mohammed Shami continued with his third over. Eoin Morgan charged down and hit over mid-on for a four. Shami responded with a bouncer. Then, a brilliantly timed four to deep backward point. He just guided the ball, nothing more. A single, then Shubman Gill lofted for a six over midwicket, and another six, same area. 21 runs from the over. Kolkata - 54/3 (6); Shubman Gill 26, Eoin Morgan 20.
8:00 PM IST: Arshdeep Singh continued. Eoin Morgan hit the third ball for a four to third man. Lucky Morgan, it didn't carry to the fielder. A single, then Shubman Gill charged down and pulled it for a four. A dot to end the 10-run over. Kolkata - 33/3 (5); Shubman Gill 14, Eoin Morgan 11.
7:55 PM IST: Mohammed Shami continued. Two dots and a single, then Eoin Morgan punished the fourth ball. Four over backward point. Two dots to end the over. Kolkata - 23/3 (4); Shubman Gill 9, Eoin Morgan 6.
7:50 PM IST: Bowling change. Arshdeep Singh, left arm seamer, on. Shubman Gill welcomed him with a four. It was followed by a wide, a single and a couple. Eight runs from the over. Kolkata - 18/3 (3); Shubman Gill 8, Eoin Morgan 2.
7:46 PM IST: Second wicket for Mohammed Shami as he managed to induce another fine nick, this time off Dinesh Karthik. Former KKR captain then wasted the review. Out for 0 off 2. Kolkata - 10/3 (2); Shubman Gill 3, Eoin Morgan 0.
7:41 PM IST: Another Wicket! Mohammed Shami shared the new ball. Two dots to Shubman Gill, then a single to extra cover. Then, faintest of nicks to send Rahul Tripathi back for seven runs. Kolkata - 10/2 (1.4); Shubman Gill 3.
7:38 PM IST: Rahul Tripathi joined Shubman Gill. The new man hit the first boundary, a six, over deep mid-wicket for a six even as a shout for 'catch it' echoed through. Nine runs and a wicket from the over. Kolkata - 9/1 (1); Shubman Gill 2, Rahul Tripathi 7.
7:33 PM IST: WICKET! What a start. A single, and Nitish Rana's gone. Caught by Chris Gayle at short fine leg, for a golden duck. Kolkata - 1/1 (0.2); Shubman Gill 1.
7:31 PM IST: Shubman Gill to face the first ball. Nitish Rana is his opening partner. And Glenn Maxwell to open the proceedings.
7:29 PM IST: Players and match officials are out. And KL Rahul in a very animated team talk.
7:21 PM IST: In the reverse fixture, the then captain Dinesh Karthik hit a timely fifty (58 off 29) to help KKR post 164/6, which proved just about enough. They won the match by two runs in Abu Dhabi despite KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal laying a solid foundation of 115 runs. Well, it was a game of millimetres as one of Glen Maxwell's hits landed just inside the rope. Had it gone over, the result would have been different. Now, Punjab, on a winning spree, will seek to avenge that heartbreaking defeat.
7:16 PM IST: As things stand now, KKR are fourth in the points table with 12 points from ten matches (6 wins, 5 defeats), while KXIP are a rung below, with 10 points from an equal number of outings (5 wins, 6 defeats). A win tonight for either side will make massive strides towards playoffs. For the record, CSK are the only team out of playoff contentions.
Check points table here.
7:06 PM IST: Both the sides are unchanged, meaning no Mayank Agarwal for KXIP and Andre Russell for KKR respectively.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Eoin Morgan (c), Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy.
Kings XI Punjab: KL Rahul (c & wk), Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh.
7:03 PM IST: KL Rahul wins the toss and Kings XI Punjab will bowl first.
7:00 PM IST: Toss coming up from Sharjah. Captains are out.
With teams making last-ditch effort to win spots in the IPL playoffs, every match counts at this stage of the tournament. Kings XI Punjab have won some of the closest matches in IPL 2020. If there was a prize for the best team with iron nerves, KL Rahul's KXIP would probably win it hands down. On Saturday, KXIP got out jail with a stunning win against Sunrisers Hyderabad, who frittered away a game from winning position to hand KXIP two crucial points at a stage when teams are gunning for spots in the IPL Playoffs (last four).
But all credit to Chris Jordan and Arshdeep Singh for picking six SRH wickets and breaking partnerships at crucial times. KXIP's bowling is certainly looking better now and with Mohammad Shami and Ravi Bishnoi providing enough back-up, KL Rahul will have enough bowling arsenal at his disposal against KKR.
Kolkata Knight Riders stunned Delhi Capitals by 59 runs on Saturday afternoon at Abu Dhabi. This win will give Eoin Morgan's team a lot of confidence. It was Varun Chakravarthy's spin that left DC's strong batting line-up all at sea. Chakravarthy picked up his maiden five-wicket haul in IPL but what came as a big plus was Pat Cummins bagging three wickets for 17 runs and those included Ajinkya Rahane and the inform Shikhar Dhawan.
Morgan will love to see KKR repeating their giant-killing act against KXIP. That will mean the England limited overs skipper is expecting Sunil Narine to produce a blistering knock in the middle overs. Narine scored 64 off 32 balls coming in at No. 5 after Nitish Rana held the top order together with a solid 81.
Both KKR and KXIP have some injury issues. Andre Russell missed the last two matches for KKR while Mayank Agarwal is also nursing a niggle.