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IPL 2019: MS Dhoni hails KL Rahul’s knock which helped KXIP win against CSK

KL Rahul scored 71 of 36 balls comprising 7 fours and 5 sixes and was adjudged Man of the Match pipping Faf du Plessis.

KL Rahul
KL Rahul. (Photo: Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The Kings XI Punjab signed off from the IPL 2019 with a win over Chennai Super Kings, who have qualified for the playoffs. KXIP chased down the required runs in style, all thanks to opener KL Rahul, who also piped Faf du Plessis to grab the Man of the Match award.

CSK batted first after losing the toss and only Du Plessis (96) and Suresh Raina (53) were the ones who could play on a decent track, but the ball was holding a bit on the surface. They added 120 runs for the second wicket and put CSK on a path of over 180 runs. However, some brilliant bowling by KXIP bowlers, especially Sam Curran (3/35) and Mohammad Shami (2/17) kept the Dhoni-led team to 170/5 in 20 overs.

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KL Rahul blasts CSK bowlers, especially Harbhajan Singh

KL Rahul and Chris Gayle opened the innings for KXIP and put on 108 runs for the first wicket in 11 overs with KL Rahul scoring 71 in 36 balls with 7 fours and 5 sixes to his name and achieved a huge feat of outscoring Chris Gayle (28 in 20 balls). Nicholas Pooran then made 36 in 22 balls and ensured KXIP reached the target in 18 overs for the loss of 4 wickets.

Rahul was particularly severe on Harbhajan Singh three fours and 2 sixes in the fourth over of the match. He was so good that even opposition captain MS Dhoni praised him in the post-match conference, and was quoted as saying, “You need to give the credit to them. It was not an easy wicket. With 3 spinners, it was difficult to manoeuvre in the first six overs. But KL batted really well, was ably supported by Chris Gayle and then Pooran towards the end was good with his hits. It was a really good batting effort from their side. We did whatever we could, it didn’t work a lot.”

Chennai Super Kings maintained their spot in the top of the points table thanks to a superior net run rate and will play the first qualifier at home in Chennai, on May 7.

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