Punjab Kings had quite an impossible task to go through the playoffs. However, they managed to do their best and keep an outside chance available by beating Chennai Super Kings on October 7 in Dubai. Punjab won the match by six wickets with seven overs to spare. This was CSK’s third loss in a row.
KL Rahul chose to field first by winning the toss. Punjab were successful in putting Chennai under a lot of pressure. Chennai were at 42 for 4 and then 61 for 5 as opener Faf du Plessis saw everything from the other end. He kept chipping away with runs and managed to build a partnership with Ravindra Jadeja. Towards the death, du Plessis managed to score some quick runs. He eventually ended with 76 runs from 55 balls, with Jadeja being the next best with 15.
CSK ended their innings at 134 for 5. Chris Jordan and Arshdeep Singh picked up two wickets each while Ravi Bishnoi and Mohammed Shami chipped in with a wicket each as well. Now, for Punjab to go past the net run rate of Mumbai Indians and still have a chance to qualify, they needed to finish this run chase in 14 overs. However, courtesy of a magnificent innings by their skipper, the run chase was done and dusted in 13 overs.
The Punjab innings didn’t have too much apart from the elegance from one man’s bat. Rahul, once again, showed what he is capable of and why he is rated so highly. He just made sure Punjab was always ahead of the rate and ended up unluckily two runs short of what could’ve been a fantastic hundred. CSK’s only positive was Shardul Thakur who picked up three wickets. With this win, Punjab have a better net run rate in comparison to Mumbai Indians, but they have finished their 14 matches and ended with six wins.
Punjab well and truly needed their skipper to fire today and help them in a run chase. Rahul responded in the exact manner in which his side would’ve asked for. He single-handedly managed to get the chase under his belt. He ended with a score of 98 runs from 42 balls, hitting six fours and seven sixes. His knock also helped him go past 600 runs once again in a season.
Chris Jordan: Coming into their team for the first time in the UAE leg, the English speedster had an impact quite immediately. He picked up the wickets of Robin Uthappa and Ambati Rayudu at a very crucial stage of the innings. Jordan ended with figures of 2 for 20 in his three overs.
- Mayank Agarwal played his 100th IPL match today.
Chennai will now wait for the results of the remaining three matches to get their final position. Punjab will also have to wait to see if they can end up in the top four.