IPL 2017: Kings XI Punjab beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 19 runs, stay alive for playoffs
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) suffered yet another humiliating defeat in the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL), this time by 19 runs to Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on Friday night. (RCB v KXIP Highlights | Scorecard)
Set a meagre target of 139 runs, the misfiring Royal Challengers batting line-up again collapsed to suffer their fourth loss on the trot.
Already out of reckoning for the playoffs, the home team was bundled out for 119 in 19 overs, which helped Kings XI Punjab better their chances of qualifying.
This is the lowest total defended at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in the history of IPL. The Virat Kohli-led outfit has not won a game in the last six outings, which includes a no-result due to rain.
None from the batting-heavy Royal Challengers Bangalore could reach a respectable score barring opener Mandeep Singh, who made 46 on a sluggish pitch.
The three batting stalwarts of the team – captain Virat Kohli (6), Chris Gayle (0) and AB de Villiers (10) -- failed to deliver with Kings XI speedster Sandeep Sharma becoming the star of the show by removing all three.
Sandeep Sharma is the only bowler in IPL to remove Kohli, Gayle and de Villiers in the same match.
Sandeep, who also picked up a four-wicket haul against Delhi Daredevils in their previous game to be named Man-of-the-Match, was again in his elements as he removed the first three RCB wickets.
That made it quite easy for the other Kings XI bowlers as they kept taking wickets at regular intervals to never let RCB settle down.
Left-arm spinner Axar Patel also bowled brilliantly to pick 3/11 from his three overs while Mohit Sharma and skipper Glenn Maxwell, a part-time spinner, chipped in with two wickets each.
Earlier, an overall strong bowling performance from RCB helped them restrict Kings XI Punjab to 138/7. After being asked to bat by RCB skipper Virat Kohli, Kings XI did not begin well and kept losing wickets at regular intervals.
Openers Hashim Amla (1) and Martin Guptill (9) got out early which put the Kings XI middle-order under pressure.
Though Shaun Marsh (20), Manan Vohra (25) and wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha (21) got starts, they could not convert their knocks into a big one, something that the visiting team needed desperately.
Left-arm paceman Aniket Choudhary was the pick of the RCB bowlers after he finished with figures of 2/17 from his four overs. He also managed to bowl a wicket-maiden 19th over.
However, some lusty blows from Patel (38 not out) in the last over, in which Shane Watson gave away 19 runs, helped Kings XI cross the 130-run mark.
Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal also slowed the momentum of Kings XI as he returned 2/21 from his four overs.