KXIP's KL Rahul: Mandeep's toughness has rubbed on to other guys

Kings XI Punjab beat Kolkata Knight Riders in Sharjah thanks to fifties from Mandeep Singh and Chris Gayle. KXIP has moved to fourth in the IPL points table.

KXIP's Mandeep Singh looks up to the skies after reaching his fifty.   -  BCCI/IPL

Kings XI Punjab skipper KL Rahul felt he is seeing the best of Chris Gayle after Punjab's eight-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders in an IPL game in Sharjah on Monday.

Chris Gayle was named man-of-the-match for his 29-ball 51, which turned the chase in Kings XI's favour.

"[On leaving Gayle out in the first half of the season] Chris, it was a very hard decision not to play him. He is the hungriest I have seen in the last seven-eight years playing for different franchises. [He is] Running ones and twos. And you know how he keeps the dressing room upbeat. To do it over and over again, year after year," he said.

Rahul praised Mandeep Singh for his mental fortitude to play through the loss of his father, who passed away last Friday.

"The kind of toughness Mandeep has shown has rubbed on to other guys. Everybody is emotional. Just to put his hand up, just to be there, just to finish off the game, makes us so proud," said Rahul.

KKR recovered from 10/3 after two overs to post 149/9 thanks to a fifty from Shubman Gill and Eoin Morgan's 40.

After the defeat Morgan said, "Particularly here in Sharjah you have to counterattack if you lose wickets early. Disappointing our partnership [with Gill] couldn't get more. When we were three down, it was about getting a partnership. We thought 185-190 would have kept us in the game, wouldn't have been a match-winning total by any stretch. But we kept losing wickets. That's the nature of the tournament."

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