Indian Premier League, 2020
Venue: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah
Date & Time: 26 October 2020
RR: 7.96 | Kings XI Punjab beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 8 wickets
So that is it from this game! Punjab move to the 4th spot and Kolkata slip to one spot below them. We have another exciting game on Tuesday as Delhi take on Hyderabad. It is an important game for both sides. So do join us as that game begins at 1800 local (1400 GMT). Till then, take care and goodbye!
Chris Gayle is named Player of the Match award for his fine knock! Gayle is all smiles and then says that he has been working hard, hitting the gym as well. Tells that it's all about the team and they still have a long way to go. On him running quick singles and doubles, Gayle says that it was important to adjust. Praises Mandeep for his superb knock. Says that he wanted to ease the pressure off him. Tells that it has been tough for him, losing his father. Adds that he wanted to win it for him and it was a special moment when he pointed skywards after getting to his half-century. Says that Narine has got him out quite a few times in the past but this wicket wasn't suitable for him and he wanted to make the most off it. Mentions that the coaches asked the senior members to step up for these games and is happy he could do so. Ends up by saying that the youngsters in the team are telling him not to retire.
Punjab skipper, KL Rahul, smiles and says that the entire team is really happy. Says they had a belief that things can turn around and the entire unit needs to be praised and not just one. Says that it is really difficult to stay away from family and then in the bubble. On Mandeep, he says that it has been a rough time for him but he stayed till the end and surely has made his father proud. On the two leg spinners doing well, Rahul mentions that Kumble is their coach so it is no surprise. Tells that he has worked really hard with both the spinners. Praises the entire support staff for the efforts they have put behind the scene. On Gayle, Rahul says that it was a hard call to leave him out from the first game. Adds that he always keeps the youngsters happy and positive and brings a lot to the dressing room. On the remaining games, Rahul says that they want to take one game at a time and wants to keep the momentum from here to the next game.
Mandeep Singh is caught for a quick chat! Says that this game was a very special one. Remembers his father and tells that his father used to tell him to always finish the game and remain not out. Says that he spoke to skipper Rahul before the game and told him that he wanted to play his natural game and adds KL supported him well. On batting with Gayle, Mandeep says that it was fun batting with him. Says that he told Gayle to never retire.
Kolkata skipper, Eoin Morgan, says that Punjab struck early and pushed them on the back foot. Feels they did well to counter-attack but adds they should've added more. Feels 180-190 would've been a great score. Tells they just kept losing wickets regularly. Hopes to adjust well in Dubai. Tells that their fate is in their hands only as if they can win the remaining two games, they can be in a good position.
The Kolkata bowling began brilliantly! Their bowlers kept it tight initially. Wickets is what they needed but that did not come. They did get Rahul but had no answers to the Gayle-Mandeep partnership. To be honest the bowlers can't be blamed. It was a poor batting effort from Kolkata and 150 was never going to be easy to defend on a wicket which was good to bat on and boundaries which are quite short.
A very convincing win for Punjab to make it 5 in 5! To be honest this total was always under par and it proved to be at least 30 runs short from being a competitive total. Rahul and Mandeep started things off slowly but that was fine when you are chasing 150. Rahul departed but then Gayle walked out and took the game by its scruff. He attacked the spinners who were managing to keep it tight till then and his innings not only released the pressure but got Mandeep going too. In the end, the two added a 100-run stand with both scoring half tons. Gayle did fall towards the end but Mandeep and Pooran ensured there were no more wickets to fall and took their side over the line.
Pat Cummins is back on.
Lockie Ferguson returns. 2-0-17-0 are his figures so far.
DRINKS! 27 needed in 24 balls. Mandeep Singh has crossed his half ton. Gayle is in a mood too. Punjab are on the course of a win here. Only some sort of magic can change things around for Kolkata. And we have seen magic happening in this tournament. Are we in for something again? Or will these two take the team home easily?
Prasidh Krishna is back on. 2-0-14-0 from him so far.
Varun Chakravarthy to bowl out. 3-0-25-1 are his figures so far.
Bowling change! Lockie Ferguson to bowl for the first time in this game.
DRINKS! Kolkata have done really well so far! They have not let the Punjab side score freely and have also taken the huge wicket of Rahul. More of the same is what they would want. Punjab need a partnership and they would hope Gayle and Mandeep can hang in there and do so.
Varun Chakravarthy is on now!
A run out appeal has been referred. Mandeep seems in though.
Prasidh Krishna to bowl from the other end!
We are back for the run chase! Eoin Morgan has got his men near the ropes in a huddle. He is giving some tips before the fielders can take their respective positions in the field. KL Rahul and Mandeep Singh are the openers for Punjab. Pat Cummins will take the new ball for Kolkata. Here we go...