IPL – 63rd match,17 May 2011
Kings XI Punjab v Royal Challengers Bangalore
The match between two teams of contrasting fortunes one team which has already made a startling comeback and qualified for the playoff’s , the other making a startling comeback after being written off to keep their slimmest hopes alive. The fortunes of both the teams rested upon their respective left handed openers and there ends the story. One fired big and one gone with the wind and the result reflected it.
The Start of the match was slightly delayed because of mild showers and that was the only point where KXIP would have been worried. In the Toss met the veteran great and a young & growing star of Indian cricket and Gilly won the toss and without any hesitation elected to bat. The start of the innings had no significance in the rest of the match until 4 overs when valthaty left when the score read 25/4 and nothing quite started and Gilly has scored just 2 runs of 8 balls until he started it all with his trademark pull over deep square leg for a six of Mithun and following that over both Marsh and Gilly found rhythm scoring a six and a four each and the in the next over gilly gave gayle his own medicine scoring two consecutive biggies and came Langeveldt who was sent to the cleaners as gilly scored three consecutive biggies this time. KXIP,now have scored 99/1 in 10 overs . There were another 4 mediocre overs bowled and KXIP were flowing freely then came Marsh should his wrath on van der Wath with 3 towering sixes and 3 classy fours in a single over (!30 runs!), this over gave the impetus and rain gods also got interested to the match and there was a small halt and when play resumed it stayed the same as marsh and gilly were almost unstoppable until the 19.5 when gilly gave his wicket after scoring what can said as one of the most dominant centuries of this IPL that too from a veteran of his age and that too at a strike rate of nearly 200 and one can say anything but vow!. Marsh out of no where holds the Orange cap to which he is no stranger at all. Before we could and even RCB could realize what was happening KXIP has set a towering total of 232 for RCB to breach and Much was expected of Gayle who is in murderous form.
RCB came into bat this time without Dilshan (do they miss him). Two Lefties in Gayle and S.Tiwary came in. praveen bowled the first over to gayle and to everybody’s shock bowled a maiden to Gayle(seriously!). Then to add another shock gayle was dismissed the next over by rhino for a 7ball duck(7ball duck? gayle?).then kohli the another ray of hope also knicked one to the slips leaving tiwary all the burden who also succumbed to the pressure pulling one to D.Huss in midwicket and all was left for Ab.devillers , little known A.pathan and experienced kaif but RR was touching the Himalayan peaks with every over and all succumbed to the scoreboard pressure and by 13 overs RCB were 89/7 with the required rate nearly 21 and there was nothing left to fight(even for pride). KXIP has shut out all doors and increased their net run rate which was their big worry and that to handsomely. RCB were eventually bowled out for 121 at the end of 17 overs and handsomely beaten by a margin of 111 runs and all the NRR that gayle gave took a big beating as it went down to +0.283 from +.850 and KXIP are now 5th in the table and RCB retained their 1st position with only a match in their hand while others have two. KXIP is all smiles after the win and is expexting a fall by either KKR or MIand not likely CSK again because of NRR.
The tournament which did not live upto the expectations until now has a chance to live up now with three results going in the following manner
MI Vs RR- RR wins
KKR Vs PWI-PWI wins
KXIP Vs DC – KXIP wins
If these results happens as such then the final of the league matches would be most likely be going down as the most viewed match of the tournament as it will determine the final team to qualify for the playoffs and KXIP would already be qualified upstaging a miracle and either KKR or MI would be facing down the barrel if it happens.