INDIA: Punjab Kings (PBKS) made it two wins in two matches in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 season after defeating Rajasthan Royals (RR) by five runs in the first-ever IPL game held in Guwahati.
PBKS Vs RR
An outstanding performance from their top order batsmen, Shikhar Dhawan and Prabhsimran Singh, and a four-wicket haul by Nathan Ellis before Sam Curran’s tight last over fuelled PBKS’ last-over victory.
Punjab Kings’ Prabhsimran Singh set the tone in the opening overs, driving the ball beautifully and hitting 15 runs off KM Asif’s second over.
Dhawan took over after Singh’s dismissal and scored his 50th half-century in IPL, ending the innings with an unbeaten 86 off 56 balls, taking Punjab Kings to 197/4 in 20 overs.
However, Ellis’ four-wicket spell helped PBKS keep RR’s scoring rate under check after Sanju Samson revived hopes of a Rajasthan comeback.
Sanju Samson, Riyan Parag, and Devdutt Padikkal were all dismissed by Ellis, who ended the night with figures of 4-30.
Despite the strong performance, RR fought back in the final overs. Shimron Hetmyer and Dhruv Jurel added 62 runs in just 27 balls, giving RR hopes of winning the game.
However, Sam Curran held his nerve in the last over, conceding ten runs and dismissing Hetmyer with a run-out, restricting Rajasthan Royals to 192/7, securing the win for PBKS.
PBKS captain Dhawan praised his team’s performance, stating that they had played to their strengths and adapted well to the Guwahati pitch. Meanwhile, RR’s captain Samson was disappointed with the result and cited poor decision-making as the cause for the loss.
The match also saw a surprise move from PBKS, as Ravichandran Ashwin opened the innings, but the move failed to pay off as Arshdeep Singh dismissed Ashwin for a duck.
Yuzvendra Chahal, on the other hand, had a forgettable night, finishing with figures of 1-50.
PBKS will look to continue their winning streak in their next match against Kolkata Knight Riders, while RR will hope to bounce back against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
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