IPL 2020: Match 50, KXIP vs RR

With this win, the Royals stay alive in the tournament.

Ben Stokes
Ben Stokes. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Rajasthan Royals (RR) have managed to stay alive in the race for the playoffs with a convincing win over the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL). After being invited to bat first, KXIP were propelled by Chris Gayle with a brilliant 99-run knock off just 63 balls with six fours and eight towering sixes. KL Rahul supported him well scoring 46 runs as KXIP post a formidable 185 runs on the board after 20 overs.

Jofra Archer and Ben Stokes took two wickets each in their respective four-over spells even as the Royals bowled decently at the death to keep KXIP batsmen at bay. During the chase, Stokes was at his brutal best yet again smashing the ball at will. He scored a 25-ball 50 within the powerplay itself. However, he got out soon after. But the job was done by then as RR had 60 runs in 5.3 overs.

Sanju Samson takes over

Robin Uthappa played second fiddle to him in the opening stand and then stitched a brilliant stand with Sanju Samson as well. The latter once again displayed his batting prowess. It was yet another half-century partnership for the second wicket which was broken with Uthappa getting out to Murugan Ashwin.

Samson, however, was set by then and raced away to 48 before getting run-out thanks to a brilliant from the substitute fielder Jagadeesha Suchith. KXIP were back in the game with 41 runs still to defend. However, it all ended very quickly as Steve Smith and Jos Buttler made sure that there were no more hiccups in the chase. RR’s victory has made the qualification scenario interesting and has kept the other teams alive as well.

KXIP skipper KL Rahul said:

It was a horrible toss to lose to be honest. It did get very easy to bat later on. There was a lot of dew in the second half and that made it a bit tough for the bowlers to grip the ball. When you’re operating with two leg spinners like we are, it does make things difficult. Don’t think we bowled that badly but need to operate better with the wet ball. The dew has been unpredictable this season. You can’t prepare for it but need to adapt to it. To get to that score on a sticky wicket was nice. Chris did well to bat right through. The season has been such that nothing has come easy. We’ve had to work hard for every point. No surprise that it has come down to the last game.

RR skipper Steve Smith said:

Ebbed and flowed. But would have been great to win a few in the middle. But it is about peaking at the right time. We still need to do our bit, We have different plans as to who goes in after who gets out. Gave Buttler a chance to bat at number 5. Nice to get over the line comfortably. Helps the NRR. The last two games he has been exceptional. Has good innovation, Hits the ball in weird areas. He is a valauble player. One of the best in the world. You are always talking to players and try to get the best of them. We know if he spends time in the middle, he will come good. Couple of games tomorrow, we will be matching them closely and then good to go day after.

Man of the Match Ben Stokes said:

I think when you are in a position like we are, you have nothing to lose. We are still hanging in. That is pleasing. The sixes are always pleasing. I went in the same mentality like I did against MI. Wanted to go hard with the new ball. We had a decent break from the last game. We normally have a quick turnaround. I cut down on the bowling part in the break to remain fresh.

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