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IPL Match 19 Review: Kohli’s maiden T20 ton in vain as Gujarat Lions win by 6 wickets

Dwayne Bravo
Dwayne Bravo celebrates after hitting the winning runs. (Photo Source: BCCI)

The Gujarat Lions suffered a big defeat at the hands of Sunrisers Hyderabad in their last game. The Suresh Raina-led side had a bit of homework to do before meeting the Royal Challengers Bangalore at home. RCB, on the other hand, managed to defend the total for the second time this season against Rising Pune Supergiants in their previous game.

Having won the toss in the 40-degree heat at Rajkot, the RCB skipper Virat Kohli opted to bat first. With no Chris Gayle in the side, Shane Watson was promoted to open. RCB went in with an extra spinner in Yuzvendra Chahal. Gujarat Lions brought in Dwayne Smith to strengthen their batting. Riding on a magnificent century by skipper Kohli and an unbeaten half century from KL Rahul, RCB posted a mammoth 180/2 in their stipulated 20 overs. Gujarat Lions had a terrific start with their openers Dwayne Smith and Brendon McCullum going all guns blazing. Raina and Dinesh Karthik gave the much needed stability in the middle order. Karthik eventually steered the hosts to a win with a well compiled half century.

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Batting first, RCB was given an early jolt as Dhawal Kulkarni got rid of Shane Watson in the second over. AB de Villiers looked good for his 20 before being caught by Raina off the bowling of Pravin Tambe. Virat Kohli, on the other end, continued batting in his sublime form. He was joined by KL Rahul, who batted sensibly too. Kohli brought up his half century in just 40 balls. The two batsmen put on an unbeaten stand of 121 in just 74 balls to take the total to an above par 180/2 in 20 overs. KL Rahul hit an unbeaten 51 off 35 balls with 4 fours and 3 sixes. Virat Kohli finally broke the jinx to score his maiden T20 ton. Being on 92 with two balls to go, Kohli hit two consecutive boundaries to bring up his first IPL ton.

Kohli’s century came in just 63 balls and was embellished with 11 boundaries and one solitary six that he hit in the last over. Both Kohli and Rahul took special liking to Gujarat’s ace bowler, Dwayne Bravo, who was taken away for 43 runs in his four overs. RCB scored 76 in their last 6 overs.

Aaron Finch injured himself while fielding and hence Dwayne Smith and Brendon McCullum walked in to open the innings for Gujarat Lions. The openers got off to a flying start, putting on 47 in 32 balls for the first wicket before Dwayne Smith was dismissed on 32 off 20 balls by Kane Richardson. The Lions scored at exactly 12 an over to reach 72/1 by the end of powerplay.

McCullum looked threatening during his knock of 42 off 24 balls with 5 fours and 2 sixes. He was caught and bowled in the 9th over by Tabraiz Shamsi. Dinesh Karthik joined Suresh Raina at the crease. The duo kept rotating the strike and never let the RCB bowlers sniff a chance. They added 53 off 44 balls for the 3rd wicket. It was Yuzvendra Chahal who broke the partnership by getting the key wicket of Gujarat skipper Suresh Raina in the 16th over. Raina was dismissed on 28 off 24 balls. There were still no signs of Aaron Finch as Ravindra Jadeja came in next. Needing 21 off the last two overs, Dinesh Karthik ensured that he picked up 14 from the penultimate over to put Lions in the driving seat.

Shane Watson was given the ball in the last over to defend 7. Watson bowled a no ball first up to make things worse for RCB. Dinesh Karthik brought up his half century in 39 balls off the free hit ball up next. A bit of drama unfolded as Jadeja got out on the next delivery. Dwayne Bravo hit the winning runs as Lions won by 6 wickets. Karthik remained unbeaten on 50 off 39 with 3 boundaries.

Brief Scores: 

RCB – 180/2 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 100*; P Tambe 1/24)

GL – 182/4 in 19.3 overs (Dinesh Karthik 50*; T Shamsi 1/21)

Man of the Match: Virat Kohli

What are the talking points of the game? – IPL 9, Match 20: GL v RCB – 5 Talking Points

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