Axar Patel and Sandeep Sharma Lead Kings XI to Vital 19-run Win Over RCB

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), led by Sandeep Sharma’s bowling efforts (3/22) and Axar Patel’s all-round contributions [38* off 17 balls with the bat and 3/11 with the ball], beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 19 runs in the 43rd match of IPL 2017. Kings XI now hold the record for the team who have defended the lowest-ever score (138/7) at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. By way of this win, Glenn Maxwell and co., with 10 points and four matches left to play, have enhanced their chances of qualifying for the playoffs.

Chasing a mere 139, RCB’s decorated batting line-up faltered for the umpteenth time this season and failed to capitalise on the good work their bowlers had done to restrict an in-form Kings XI batting line-up to a low score.

The Bangalore pitch was on the slower side and shot-making was by no means easy… unless you gave yourself time to settle in and got used to the slow pace and low bounce. But not all Royal Challengers’ batsmen were victims of the nature of the pitch and in fact, many of them were architects of their own downfall.

The likes of Virat Kohli, Mandeep Singh, AB de Villiers, and Chris Gayle played reckless shots that brought about their downfalls. Kohli, de Villiers and Gayle gave Sandeep Sharma the charge in an attempt to intimidate him and disrupt the line and length he likes to bowl. But this troika were undone by the Punjab seamer’s inherent ability to swing the ball both ways.

Sandeep bowled his four overs on the trot from overs 1-7, and caused severe damage to RCB’s batting line-up. He won the man-of-the-match award for his figures of 4-15 dots-22-3. Sandeep also earned the distinction of becoming the first bowler to dismiss Gayle, de Villiers and Kohli in the same match.

Though these batsmen fell cheaply and Bangalore were reduced to 37/3 in the fifth over, Mandeep Singh was playing his best knock of this season. Chasing a low score, RCB needed just one batsman to make a 60 or a 70 in order to win and bring their losing streak to an end. But Mandeep, on this night, was forced to do it all on his own. Amid the constantly rising required run rate and a lack of support from his batting partners, an under-pressure Mandeep hit across the line of a Maxwell delivery (from round the wicket) that went on with the arm and saw his stumps shattered. The presence of Pawan Negi, a reliable lower order batsman, was still giving RCB a ray of hope. But he too succumbed to the pressure and perished for 21.

Earlier in the evening, Kohli won the toss and chose to field first. Royal Challengers brought in Samuel Badree for Adam Milne and Chris Gayle for Travis Head. The visiting Kings XI were unchanged from the win over Delhi Daredevils.

Aniket Choudhary, who had been expensive against Mumbai Indians, began well with the new ball for Royal Challengers and dismissed Hashim Amla in the very first over of the match. This was a significant blow to Kings XI, with the South African right-hander having been in good form.

On a slow pitch, the stroke-makers in the Kings XI batting line-up struggled and failed to make substantial contributions. 25 by Manan Vohra was the highest score by a frontline batsman for the visitors at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. The pitch conditions were exploited wonderfully by Pawan Negi and Yuzvendra Chahal, who were largely slower through the air and forced the batsmen to come at them. With the pitch being slow and low, the batsmen from both teams struggled for timing and placement. So, needless to say, the key to success for spinners was bowling slower through the air.

Axar Patel, batting No. 7, played the most significant knock (38* off 17 balls) to help his team reach 138 at the end of 20 overs. He walked into bat when Kings XI were 78/5, and with his ability to strike the ball cleanly, gathered 10-15 more runs than what his team might have ended up with otherwise. The final over of Kings XI’s innings yielded 19 runs and was the most expensive, as Axar hit Watson for a six and a couple of fours to add what would prove to be vital runs.

Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Kings XI Punjab, 43rd Match Scorecard

Playing XIs 

Bangalore: 1. Virat Kohli (c), 2. Chris Gayle, 3. AB de Villiers, 4. Kedar Jadhav (wk), 5. Mandeep Singh, 6. Shane Watson, 7. Pawan Negi, 8. Aniket Choudhary, 9. Sreenath Aravind, 10. Samuel Badree, and 11. Yuzvendra Chahal

Punjab: 1. Glenn Maxwell (c), 2. Hashim Amla, 3. Martin Guptill, 4. Manan Vohra, 5. Shaun Marsh 6. Wriddhiman Saha (c), 7. Axar Patel, 8. Mohit Sharma, 9. Sandeep Sharma, 10. Varun Aaron, and 11. Thangarasu Natarajan

Scores

Kings XI: 138/7 (Axar 38*; Choudhary 2/17 and Chahal 2/21)
Royal Challengers: 119/10 (Mandeep 46; Axar 3/11 and Sandeep 3/22)

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) innings (toss: Bangalore, who chose to bowl first)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Hashim Amla caught Jadhav, bowled Choudhary 1 (3) 0 0 33.33
Martin Guptill caught Negi, bowled Aravind 9 (10) 1 0 90.00
Shaun Marsh caught Mandeep, bowled Negi 20 (17) 3 0 117.64
Manan Vohra caught de Villiers, bowled Chahal 25 (28) 1 1 89.28
Wriddhiman Saha bowled Watson 21 (25) 1 0 84.00
Glenn Maxwell caught Badree, bowled Chahal 6 (11) 1 0 54.54
Axar Patel not out 38 (17) 3 2 223.52
Mohit Sharma caught Jadhav, bowled Choudhary 6 (4) 1 0 150.00
Varun Aaron not out 0 (5) 0 0 0.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Sandeep Sharma and Thangarasu Natarajan
Extras: 12 [3 wides, 8 byes (the joint-second-most in the history of IPL) and 1 leg bye]
KXIP’s total: 138/7 in 20 overs, at 6.90 runs per over
KXIP’s fall of wickets: 2/1 (Amla, 0.5), 18/2 (Guptill, 3.3), 39/3 (Marsh, 6.6), 61/4 (Vohra, 11.2), 78/5 (Maxwell, 13.5), 112/6 (Saha, 17.2), and 119/7 (Mohit, 18.1)
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Aniket Choudhary 4 13 17 2 4.25
Sreenath Aravind 2 6 13 1 6.50
Shane Watson 4 5 43 1 10.75
Samuel Badree 3 8 14 0 4.67
Pawan Negi 3 7 21 1 7.00
Yuzvendra Chahal 4 14 21 2 5.25
Bangalore innings (target: 139 runs in 20 overs, at 6.95 runs per over)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Mandeep Singh bowled Maxwell 46 (40) 5 2 115.00
Chris Gayle caught Guptill, bowled Sandeep 0 (2) 0 0 0.00
Virat Kohli bowled Sandeep 6 (6) 1 0 100.00
AB de Villiers caught Saha, bowled Sandeep 10 (6) 1 1 166.66
Kedar Jadhav caught Axar, bowled Mohit 6 (6) 1 0 100.00
Shane Watson caught Saha, bowled Axar 3 (6) 0 0 50.00
Pawan Negi caught Saha, bowled Axar 21 (23) 2 0 91.30
Sreenath Aravind leg before wicket Maxwell 4 (6) 0 0 66.66
Samuel Badree bowled Axar 8 (9) 0 0 88.88
Aniket Choudhary caught Guptill, bowled Mohit 4 (6) 0 0 66.66
Yuzvendra Chahal not out 4 (4) 0 0 100.00
Extras: 7 (3 wides and 4 leg byes)
RCB’s total: 119/10 in 19 overs, at 6.26 runs per over
RCB’s fall of wickets: 1/1 (Gayle, 0.4), 23/2 (Kohli, 2.5), 37/3 (de Villiers, 4.5), 52/4 (Jadhav, 7.5), 71/5 (Watson, 10.5), 73/6 (Mandeep, 11.2), 87/7 (Aravind, 13.5), 111/8 (Negi, 17.1), 111/9 (Badree, 17.2), and 119/10 (Choudhary, 18.6)
Punjab bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Sandeep Sharma 4 15 22 3 5.50
Thangarasu Natarajan 1 2 15 0 15.00
Varun Aaron 4 14 28 0 7.00
Mohit Sharma 4 8 24 2 6.00
Axar Patel 3 7 11 3 3.66
Glenn Maxwell 3 5 15 2 5.00

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