Lynn's innings in vain as KXIP bowlers restrict KKR

After being taken to the cleaners in the powerplay, Kings XI Punjab bowlers — led by spinners Rahul Tewatia and Axar Patel — produced a brilliant display in the middle overs to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 14 runs.

Sandeep Sharma celebrates KXIP's victory over KKR   -  Sportzpics

After being taken to the cleaners in the powerplay, Kings XI Punjab bowlers — led by spinners Rahul Tewatia and Axar Patel — produced a brilliant display in the middle overs to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 14 runs.

The win has kept Punjab’s hopes alive in the tournament and KKR will now have to win its final game against Mumbai at home to be sure of a berth in the final four. Chasing 168, Sunil Narine and Lynn provided some fireworks as KKR made 61 for the loss of one wicket in the first six overs.

Player of the Match: Axar Patel

The Australian got his front leg out of the way at every given opportunity to swing his arms as he raced to 41 off just 19 balls in the first six overs with seven fours and a six. But Punjab fought its way back into the game when Tewatia scalped Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa in the 10th over and checked the flow or runs. He kept the pressure at one end finishing his spell at one go with figures of two for 18.

Full scorecard and ball-by-ball details

In the seven overs after the powerplay, KKR managed only 36 runs. Patel, too, did his bit chipping in with quiet overs as KKR failed to find a boundary for more than six overs after the powerplay. Pacers Mohit Sharma, Sandeep Sharma and Matt Henry then came back strongly in the last six overs with some tight bowling to keep the battle for the playoffs alive with Lynn waging a lone battle.

Earlier, put into bat, Punjab was meandering in the first half until skipper Glenn Maxwell’s power hitting and few boundaries in the end from Tewatia, helped KXIP put a decent score of 167. Opener Manan Vohra gave the innings the initial momentum, picking two boundaries each of Sunil Narine and Umesh Yadav before getting caught behind to a poor ball.

Guptill and Shaun Marsh too followed soon with some tight bowling from Sunil Narine and Chris Woakes squeezing the run flow. Maxwell, who walked in at 56 for three, wasted no time in getting a move on as he slammed four sixes in his 25-ball 44.  Colin de Grandhomme, who until then had figures of none for 18, had a bad final over conceding 19 runs as Maxwell went after him slamming two sixes.

The Australian then launched into Kuldeep Yadav getting under the deliveries to pick two sixes over the mid-wicket fence. However, the wily chinaman bowler sent a googly wide outside off stump and Maxwell could only slice it over cover with Woakes completing a brilliant running catch, diving to his left.

Both teams failed to score from nearly a third of its deliveries (KKR 40 dots, Punjab 43 dots) and is something they would want to rectify going forward.

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