Kings XI beats Royal Challengers by 19 runs in IPL

May 5, 2017

BANGALORE, India (AP) — Kings XI Punjab stayed in contention for the Indian Premier League playoffs with a convincing 19-run victory over struggling Royal Challengers Bangalore on Friday.

Royal Challengers could not recover after seamer Sandeep Sharma (3-22) struck three times in his first three overs and were dismissed for 119 in 19 overs after Kings XI had posted 138-7.

Sandeep took the heart out of Royal Challengers’ run-chase when he dismissed all the three big guns — Chris Gayle, captain Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers — within the first six overs of batting powerplay.

The three gifted their wickets while charging down the wicket against Sandeep’s impeccable swing bowling.

Opening batsman Mandeep Singh top-scored with 46 off 40 balls, but he was clean bowled by captain Glenn Maxwell (2-15) in the 12th over which all but sealed the game for Kings XI.

Left-arm spinner Axar Patel then chipped in with 3-10 that included the wickets of Pawan Negi and Samuel Badree off successive deliveries and Mohit Sharma (2-24) closed out the game by taking the last wicket of Aniket Choudhary.

“Sandeep has been outstanding,” Maxwell said. “To get those three players out in a whole season is a great effort, let alone in one game.”

Kings XI now have 10 points from five victories after 10 matches and are fifth.

Last year’s finalists Royal Challengers are bottom with five points after winning just two games from 12 matches.

“It’s really disheartening,” Kohli said. “I don’t know what to say in games like these anymore ... anything we are trying with the bat is not working. We let ourselves down with the bat once again, I’ve not seen so many collapses from a team in one season.”

Earlier, after being sent in to bat, the Kings XI total was propelled by the late charge of Patel. He struck an unbeaten 38 off 17 balls as the top-order batsmen struggled against seamer Choudhary (2-17) and the leg-spin of Yuzvendra Chahal (2-21).

Hashim Amla was caught behind off Choudhary in the first over and the South African walked off despite the fact that neither the bowler nor the wicketkeeper had appealed.

Chahal grabbed the wickets of Manan Vohra (25) and Maxwell (6) before Choudhary returned and bowled a 19th over wicket-maiden by dismissing Mohit.

But Patel smashed Shane Watson for 19 runs in the last over that included a straight six and two fours. That late blitz proved decisive in the end.