IPL 2017 – 4th Match: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) | Scorecard and Report | Holkar Stadium, Indore

Match report

Glenn Maxwell seems to have taken to captaincy like a duck to water, leading Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) from the front and helping them make a winning start to their IPL 2017 campaign. Having put Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) into bat after winning the toss, Maxwell managed his bowling resources astutely to restrict the Steve Smith-led visitors to 163/6 batting first. Then, with his team reeling at 83/3, he walked out to bat and took charge of the proceedings while being ably supported by David Miller. Kings XI won the 4th match of the 10th edition of the IPL by six wickets at the Holkar Stadium in Indore, where they will play Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Monday night (April 10, 8pm).

Ajinkya Rahane and Smith had struck attractive and attacking half-centuries against Mumbai Indians (MI) in their opening match, and came into this contest high on confidence. Sandeep Sharma and Mohit Sharma, though, strangled these two in-form batsmen at the very beginning, with their ability to move the ball and hit the right lengths, and restricted RPS to merely 35 runs in the powerplay. Mayank Agarwal was dismissed by Sandeep in the very first over of RPS innings.

Having gotten off to a sluggish start, either Rahane or Smith had to make a move. Rahane is more of a touch player and not a naturally aggressive batsman. He times the ball well and has an extensive range of strokes, but Rahane doesn’t bludgeon the ball like an MS Dhoni or a Yuvraj Singh, so he had to be his unnatural self here. And, needless to say, Rahane, in trying to play an uppish drive on the off side, skied the ball and was caught at deep point.

Smith was out in a similar fashion—caught in the deep on the leg side in trying to play an expansive stroke—in the ninth over of RPS innings and the visitors were in big, big trouble at 53/3. Smith, mind you, had won them the match against MI, and his wicket was always going to be the one the match hinged on, given the form he has been in across formats.

MS Dhoni joined Ben Stokes in the middle and this was a crucial phase of the match. One more wicket, ideally of Stokes, for Kings XI would move them into the ascendancy. RPS, needless to say, were on the back-foot and needed a partnership.

Dhoni, having lost his mojo with the bat and as a leader, didn’t get going at all during his short stay at the crease. And he perished to a benign delivery bowled on off stump, hitting it straight back to the bowler Swapnil Singh, who juggled the ball a couple of times before clinging on. Dhoni’s dismissal worsened the situation for RPS, whose last recognised batsman Manoj Tiwary walked in to join Stokes.

The two left-arm spinners for Kings XI (Swapnil and Axar Patel) enjoyed bowling on an Indore track that offered them considerable purchase. Swapnil, in particular, got the ball to grip the surface and his ability to do so was what did Dhoni in.

Complementing the two spinners who bowled their overs from one end was Thangarasu Natarajan, KXIP’s 3 Crore recruit at the IPL 2017 auction. The lanky left-arm quick from Tamilnadu kept the ball full and denied RPS’s right and left-handers the room to work with.

Having made just 84 runs and lost four wickets in 13 overs, when the second and final strategic time-out of the innings was taken, the ball was now in RPS’s court and one of Stokes and Tiwary had to take on the mantle of being the aggressor.

Stokes assumed the responsibility and facing up to Axar, the English batting all-rounder picked the right deliveries to find the fours and sixes. With the ball either turning in and mostly going straight, Stokes was able to line Axar up and delivered a couple of lusty blows in the 14th over to give RPS innings some momentum. Tiwary, at the other end, followed suit and by the end of the 15th over, RPS had gotten past the innings 100 (108/4, to be precise), though they had to keep finding two-three boundaries every over.

Of all the strokes played by Stokes on the evening, one, in particular, stood out. Marcus Stoinis was the bowler and he banged the second delivery of the 16th over halfway down the pitch. Stokes, contrary to what you usually do to a short ball, danced down the wicket and slapped the ball which came at him chest-high over long on’s head for the flattest six you will ever see in international cricket. Stokes had made a great connection, but his approach to Stoinis’ delivery and execution of the stroke were unbelievable!

RPS didn’t quite get the 20-run overs they wanted, having been 84/4 after 13 overs. But Stokes and Tiwary pushed the RPS’s total towards 150. Stokes was dismissed by Axar in the 18th over, for a valuable 32-ball 50. Tiwary was then joined by the Victorian all-rounder Daniel Christian, who was picked in the playing XI in place of Adam Zampa. His batting skills proved handy at the death for RPS, who finished with 163/6. They had scored 55 runs off the final five overs.

The target of 164 was by no means daunting, particularly with Kings XI possessing big-hitters like Glenn Maxwell and David Miller, whose ability to clear the boundary with ease is well-known.

Vohra and Hashim Amla had given Kings XI a reasonable start, but the problem for Kings XI was that Vohra and Wriddhiman Saha, who batted at No. 3, were dismissed inside the powerplay. Amla is good at anchoring an innings, but he cannot be your aggressor. Axar was promoted to No. 4 in the batting order in a bid to take on the two RPS’s leg spinners, Rahul Chahar and the star of the show against Mumbai, Imran Tahir.

Tahir continued from where he left off in Pune, by bowling a stump-to-stump line and using his variations cleverly. Tahir, because he never gives the ball any air, can be hard to score off: you do not want to play across the line against him and if you do not pick his googly, which, mind you, is hard, you will see your stumps shattered or trapped in front. And, as a case in point, Saha fell to Tahir’s googly. He was bamboozled by a ball that pitched on off and middle and crashed into leg stump!

Axar’s promotion, though, didn’t have the desired effect and Amla had slowed down after a breezy beginning. The required run rate shot up and the runs started coming in ones and twos. Because Axar had been promoted up the order and Amla wasn’t going to hurt RPS, their wickets in back-to-back overs (the 11th and 12th) didn’t mean much to RPS, for whom the key wickets were Maxwell and Miller’s.

Rajat Bhatia wasn’t able to strangle these two big-hitters like he did on Thursday night, against Mumbai. And his slow seam-ups only played into Maxwell and Miller’s hands. At no stage of their match-winning, 79-run fifth-wicket partnership did Maxwell and Miller look out of place. Having gotten together in the 12th over, they brought the required run rate down with very little fuss and then cruised through to the victory in 19 overs.

Match facts

IPL 2017, 4th match: Kings XI vs Pune Supergiant
Date and time: April 8, 4:00 PM IST
Venue: Holkar Stadium, Indore

Kings XI vs Pune Supergiant, 4th Match Scorecard

Glenn Maxwell and Kings XI won the toss and unsurprisingly chose to field first.

Playing XIs

KXIP: 1. Glenn Maxwell (c), 2. Manan Vohra, 3. Hashim Amla, 4. David Miller, 5. Marcus Stoinis, 6. Wriddhiman Saha, 7. Axar Patel, 8. Swapnil Singh, 9. Sandeep Sharma, 10. Mohit Sharma, and 11. Thangarasu Natarajan

RPS: 1. Steve Smith, 2. Ajinkya Rahane, 3. Mayank Agarwal, 4. MS Dhoni, 5. Ben Stokes, 6. Manoj Tiwary, 7. Rajat Bhatia, 8. Rahul Chahar, 9. Daniel Christian, 10. Imran Tahir, and 11. Ashok Dinda

Scores

RPS: 163/4 (Stokes 50 and Tiwary 40*; Sandeep 2/33)
KXIP: 164/4 (Maxwell 44* and Miller 30*; Tahir 2/29)

Result: Kings XI beat Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) by six wickets and made a winning start to their IPL 2017 campaign. Glenn Maxwell was named the man-of-the-match for his match-winning 44* and astute captaincy

Rising Pune Supergiant’s (RPS) Innings
Batsmen and dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate    
Ajinkya Rahane

caught Stoinis, bowled Natarajan

19 (15) 1 1 126.66
Mayank Agarwal

bowled Sandeep

0 (4) 0 0 0.00
Steve Smith

caught Vohra, bowled Stoinis

26 (27) 3 0 96.29
Ben Stokes

caught and bowled Axar

50 (32) 2 3 156.25
MS Dhoni

caught and bowled Swapnil

5 (11) 0 0 45.45
Manoj Tiwary

not out

40 (23) 3 2 173.91
Daniel Christian

caught Maxwell, bowled Sandeep

17 (8) 2 1 212.50
Rajat Bhatia

not out

0 (0) 0 0 0.00
Extras 6 (5 wides and 1 leg bye)
Batsmen who didn’t bat Rahul Chahar, Ashok Dinda, and Imran Tahir
RPS’s total 163/6 in 20 overs, at 8.15 runs per over
RPS’s fall of wickets 1/1 (Agarwal, 0.5), 36/2 (Rahane, 6.2), 49/3 (Smith, 8.1), 71/4 (Dhoni, 11.2), 132/5 (Stokes, 17.3), and 162/6 (Christian, 19.5)
Kings XI Punjab’s (KXIP) Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate  
Sandeep Sharma 4 8 33 2 8.25
Mohit Sharma 4 6 34 0 8.50
Axar Patel 4 7 27 1 6.75
Thangarasu Natarajan 3 4 26 1 8.67
Marcus Stoinis 3 5 28 1 9.33
Swapnil Singh 2 3 14 1 7.00
KXIP Innings (target: 164 in 20 overs, at 8.20 runs per over)
Batsmen and dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate    
Hashim Amla

caught Stokes, bowled R Chahar

28 (27) 2 1 103.70
Manan Vohra

caught Tiwary, bowled Dinda

14 (9) 1 1 155.55
Wriddhiman Saha

bowled Tahir

14 (9) 3 0 155.55
Axar Patel

caught and bowled Tahir

24 (22) 1 1 109.09
Glenn Maxwell

not out

44 (20) 2 4 220.00
David Miller

not out

30 (27) 1 2 111.11
Extras 10 (9 wides and 1 leg bye)
Batsmen who didn’t bat Marcus Stoinis, Sandeep Sharma, Mohit Sharma, Thangarasu Natarajan, and Swapnil Singh
KXIP’s total 164/4 in 19 overs at 8.63 runs per over
KXIP’s fall of wickets 27/1 (Vohra, 2.5), 49/2 (Saha, 5.2), 83/3 (Amla, 10.4), and 85/4 (Axar, 11.1)
RPS’s Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate  
Ashok Dinda 3 7 26 1 8.67
Daniel Christian 2 4 24 0 12.00
Ben Stokes 4 10 32 0 8.00
Imran Tahir 4 8 29 2 7.25
Rahul Chahar 4 9 32 1 8.00
Rajat Bhatia 2 3 20 0 10.00

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