Record-breaking Rahul punishes Kohli as Kings XI hammer RCB

By Sports Desk September 24, 2020

KL Rahul punished Virat Kohli for a pair of drops by scoring the first century of the IPL season as Kings XI Punjab crushed Royal Challengers Bangalore by 97 runs in Dubai.

Kings XI captain Rahul spearheaded a dominant victory for his team – their first of the campaign – making an unbeaten 132 off 69 balls in a stunning display of big hitting.

The India international made 42 off his last nine deliveries as RCB were severely punished at the death, their last two overs from Dale Steyn (0-57) and Shivam Dube (2-33) going for 49.

Rahul brought up his ton in an incredible penultimate over that saw him plunder 26 off Steyn, as Kings XI surged from 157-3 to 206-3 at the end of their innings.

RCB paid a heavy price for captain Kohli twice dropping Rahul, first when he was on 83 again when he was on 90 and gearing up for a phenomenal late flurry.

Bangalore never looked like matching the tally. They were reduced to 3-4 when Sheldon Cottrell (17-2) removed Kohli for one, with Washington Sundar (30) and AB de Villiers (28) the only players to score more than 20 as they were skittled for 109.

 

RECORD-BREAKING RAHUL

By surpassing Rishabh Pant's unbeaten 128 for Delhi Daredevils in 2018, Rahul set a record for the highest score by an Indian batsman in the IPL.

De Villiers (133no), Brendon McCullum (158no) and Chris Gayle (175no) are the only players to have bettered Rahul's knock in the competition.

He finished with 14 fours and seven maximums.

NO WAY BACK

When Kohli sliced Cottrell to Ravi Bishnoi after Devdutt Padikkal sent the West Indies left-armer to the same man at mid-on, RCB were left with a mountain to climb.

Bishnoi (3-32) also claimed the scalps of Aaron Finch (20), Umesh Yadav (0) and Sundar to cap an impressive display, but the pick of the bowlers was Murugan Ashwin.

His leg spin accounted for De Villiers and put RCB out of their misery, with Navdeep Saini (6) and Yuzvendra Chahal (1) the final wickets to fall as Ashwin finished with figures of 3-21 from his three overs.

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    RCB made it four wins out of four to go top of the table courtesy of a magnificent run chase from their openers at Wankhede Stadium on Thursday.

    The second-bottom Royals posted 177-9 in Mumbai following a poor start to their innings after Kohli put them in, Shivam Dube top-scoring with 46 and Rahul Tewatia making 40.

    Mohammed Siraj was the pick of the RCB bowlers with figures of 3-27, while Harshal Patel claimed 3-47.

    The imperious Padikkal and Kohli made light work of chasing down their target in only 16.3 overs, dishing out some brutal treatment in a sublime stand.

    Padikkal made his highest IPL total with a sensational 101 not out from only 52 balls and Kohli was unbeaten on a classy 72 from 47 deliveries when RCB reached their victory target.

    Big-money signing Chris Morris was among the Royals bowlers to suffer, going for 38 from three overs, while Shreyas Gopal (0-35) also struggled and Tewatia's two overs cost 23 runs.

    A dominant win for RCB puts them two points clear at the summit in what has been a dream start to the tournament for Kohli's side.


    Siraj strikes big early blows

    India seamer Siraj struck two huge early blows as the Royals were reduced to 18-3 in the fifth over after being put in by Kohli.

    He rattled Jos Buttler's off stump to send the wicketkeeper-batsman on his way for only eight and saw the back of David Miller for a second-ball duck, trapping the South Africa batsman leg before with a yorker.

    Washington Sundar removed the dangerous Sanju Samson straight after he had hit him for six, before clean striking and improvisation from Dube and Tewatia - who had two sixes apiece - got Rajasthan up to a more competitive score than they had been in danger of posting.

     

    Padikkal and Kohli put on a show

    Padikkal was the main aggressor as RCB got the run chase off to a flyer, dominating the strike as Kohli ticked over at the other end.

    It took Padikkal just 28 balls to reach his half-century and Bangalore had 107 on the board just 10 overs in.

    Kohli clicked through the gears as he reached yet another landmark and Paddikal brought up a maiden IPL century in the 17th over, with victory almost secure. He cleared the rope six times and hit another 11 boundaries, while Kohli struck three sixes and six fours in a batting masterclass from the openers.

  • Du Plessis sends CSK top despite thrilling KKR run chase Du Plessis sends CSK top despite thrilling KKR run chase

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    Some trademark huge hitting from Andre Russell – who smashed 54 from 22 balls with six maximums – gave KKR hope. With much-needed support from Dinesh Karthik (40), he embarked on an extraordinary innings until being bowled behind his legs by Sam Curran (1-58).

    Russell had reached his fifty in just 21 balls and was visibly frustrated after his dismissal.

    Karthik became only the third player ever – after MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma – to reach 200 IPL games and kept going until Lungi Ngidi trapped him lbw, while Pat Cummins continued the fight, scoring 66 not out for his highest career T20 score.

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    FAF ON FINE FORM

    A tremendous innings from Du Plessis saw him score 13 boundaries, including four sixes.

    He came close to a hundred and was on strike with 94 to his name with two balls to go only to hit a single, allowing Ravindra Jadeja to smash a six off the only ball he faced and finish the Chennai innings with a flourish.

    Du Plessis' 95 was the second-highest score of IPL 2021 and the highest unbeaten innings.

    He now holds the highest average (82) of any player – quite the recovery after going out for a duck in the first match against the Delhi Capitals.

    UNWELCOME RUN FOR KKR

    KKR have gone two years without reaching the play-offs and their start to the season is not helping their hopes of a return to the top four, with this their fourth loss in five meetings with Super Kings.

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