IPL 2019: Match 4, RR vs KXIP – Chris Gayle overhauls Rajasthan’s tactics
Chris Gayle starred in Kings XI Punjab's maiden IPL victory in Jaipur.
Updated - Mar 26, 2019 12:18 pm
Chris Gayle has been batting like a beast ever since his announcement of retiring from the ODI format after the World Cup this year. He carried his exploits from the home ODI series against England into the IPL. Taking the field for the first time in the 2019 season, Gayle struck a 47-ball 79 by hitting four maximums and eight fours.
The knock was a special one for the Kings XI who got their maiden win in the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. The target of 185 turned out to be too much for the Rajasthan Royals (RR) after the controversial Mankad dismissal of Jos Buttler.
Things the Royals got right:
The player match-ups are very crucial in the T20 format which the Rajasthan Royals got right. They brought in Dhawal Kulkarni with the new ball against the likes of KL Rahul and Chris Gayle. The Mumbaikar claimed both the batsmen on three occasions in the IPL before this game. Rahul was dismissed for the 4th time when he edged one in the very first over to Buttler. Coming into the game, Gayle scored only 35 runs from 31 balls and was bowled on three occasions by Kulkarni in the IPL.
The Universe Boss is known for being tentative against the off-spinners especially in the powerplay overs. The Royals ticked this box as well by introducing Krishnappa Gowtham from the other end who conceded one run off the six balls he bowled to Gayle in the previous season.
The speedster Jofra Archer dismissed Gayle once in the seven deliveries he bowled during the last edition by conceding nine runs. As a part of their plans to contain the big man, the trio of Kulkarni, Gowtham and Archer collectively bowled six out of the first seven overs of the Kings XI’s innings.
The actual result:
The Rajasthan Royals had their plans in right shape with the KXIP crawling at 37/1 after seven overs. Gayle scored only 14 off 18 balls and it proved the point that he was determined to negotiate his threats. The 39-year-old Gayle didn’t bother about the low scoring-rate as he was well aware of what sort of damage he can do once the likes of Ben Stokes and Jaydev Unadkat were handed the ball against him.
Gayle scored only 30 runs with three boundaries from the 28 balls he faced from Kulkarni, Gowtham, and Archer. But against Stokes and Unadkat, he collected 49 from only 19 deliveries by smashing nine boundaries. His presence didn’t allow Ajinkya Rahane to hand the ball to the leg-spinner, Shreyas Gopal. Rahane seemed to lack plan B while Gayle feasted by targeting Unadkat and Stokes.