IPL

Bairstow hails 'ballistic' Kings after record IPL run chase

By Sports Desk April 27, 2024

Jonny Bairstow saluted "ballistic" Punjab Kings following their historic Indian Premier League victory over Kolkata Knight Riders.

The England batter scored an unbeaten century as the Kings successfully chased down 262 - the highest in T20 history - with eight balls to spare at Eden Gardens.

Bairstow hit a wonderful 108 not out from 48 balls - with nine sixes along the way - while Shashank Singh chipped in with 68 from 28 deliveries as the Kings ended their four-game losing streak.

"We knew that we had to go ballistic after how they batted," said the 34-year-old, who made his second IPL century five years after his first. "We had to take risks, and thankfully they came off.

"I've never been faced with a target like that before. So, we knew the powerplay would be important, and if anything is close to being in your area, you've got to make the most of it."

The performances of Bairstow and Singh contributed towards further history, with the overall tally of 42 sixes the highest recorded in a single T20 match.

"Cricket has turned to baseball, hasn't it?!" Punjab skipper Sam Curran added. "Guys can hit balls for long periods of time, the coaches, training, the dew, dot balls become wide after reviews and you get the extra ball. Stats are going of the window."

KKR skipper Shreyas Iyer was left disappointed to see his side's impressive haul overturned, but urged his team-mates to learn from the experience.

"Both teams played tremendously. You have to go back to the drawing board and see where you went wrong," he said. "Not defending hurts, but it's a great lesson for the players."

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