IPL 9 Match 39 Review: RCB stay alive with a thrilling last ball win over KXIP

IPL 9 Match 39 Review: RCB stay alive with a thrilling last ball win over KXIP

Royal Challengers Bangalore RCB
Mohali: Royal Challengers Bangalore players celebrate fall of a wicket during an IPL match between Kings XI Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore at Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali on May 9, 2016. (Photo Source: Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The IS Bindra Stadium at Mohali wasn’t fully packed like other venues today. But, the ones who joined the players at the venue had a spectacular experience as hosts Kings XI Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore played out an entertaining contest which went down till the last ball. The RCB side kept their stakes alive in the tournament after they managed to get past the KXIP side by a close one-run win.

Chasing 176 runs to win, the KIXP side, powered by skipper Murali Vijay’s blistering 57 balls 89 runs, nearly chased down the target if the RCB bowler not pulled back in the death overs.

The hosts began their chasing effort pretty steadily with Vijay putting on 45 runs for the 1st wicket with Hashim Amla before the latter departed in the last over of the powerplay. But, the skipper continued to bat with intent and was briefly support by Wriddhiman Saha. The game was in equal balance and was in nobody’s favor till the halfway stage before leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal made a great impact in the 11th over of the match snapping Saha and David Miller off successive deliveries. This immediate turnaround swung the match in RCB’s favor.

Vijay looked defiant and kept his team in contention of the match. He received great support from Marcus Stoinis. Together, the pair stitched a 51 run stand. But, RCB clawed back in the game again after Shane Watson dismissed Vijay in the 17th over. The game became more interesting from this stage as the momentum swung back the home team after Stoinis cracked 13 runs off the following over to reduce the equation to 24 runs off the last 12 balls. But, Watson again came back and bowled a superb penultimate over to keep 17 off the last over for Chris Jordan to defend.

However, Stoinis looked adamant and added more spice to the already exciting contest by hitting a string a four and six off the back to back to deliveries. But, Jordan somehow managed to restrict the batsman and enable RCB snatch the victory at the last moment.

Earlier, the RCB side got off to an ideal start after being put into bat by the home side. The opening pair of KL Rahul and Virat Kohli continued their fine performance and put on a 65 run stand for the first wicket. It was sort of role reversal between Kohli and Rahul. KL Rahul took apart the opposition while the skipper was happy playing the supporting role. The pair continued to flourish till the 8th over before the stand was broken by KC Cariappa.

After a good start, the RCB innings received a jolt from the Punjab spinners KC Cariappa and Axar Patel. Both almost triggered a collapse before AB de Villiers and Sachin Baby resurrected the innings. Cariappa, who was introduced in the 8th over, grabbed two wickets in the space of three balls. He first put an end to Rahul’s onslaught in just two balls after into the attack. A ball later, he picked up the golden wicket of Virat Kohli. Left-arm spinner Axar Patel then came in the following over and got better of Shane Watson to send a mini shockwave in the RCB camp. They were instantly reduced to 67/3 after being 63 for no loss.

But, De Villiers and Keralite Sachin Baby then got together in the re-building work. The pair went on to create a huge impact for the RCB as they stitched 88 run for the 4th wicket in just 55 balls. De Villiers initially seemed to be struggling but then got his eyes set and unleashed his trademark unorthodox range of shots to boost the team run rate. Baby also did his part with timely hits to the boundary. Both took RCB from a stage of uncertainty to a highly commanding position.

But, unfortunately, just when the visitors looked set for a 200+ score, de Villiers lost his wicket to Sandeep Sharma in the 18th over. The RCB side, however, did let things slip away as Travis Head and Baby accumulated 20 run in the last couple of overs to take the team to total to 175/6 at the end of 20 overs.

Brief Scores:

Royal Challengers Bangalore: 175/6 in 20 overs

Kings XI Punjab: 174/4 in 20 overs

Man of the Match: Shane Watson

Also, Read – Twitter Reactions: RCB clinch a thriller at Mohali by just 1 run