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IPL 9: Magnificent Virat Kohli powers RCB to 82-run win over KXIP

Bangalore: Virat Kohli battled immense physical pain to script yet another magnificent century to power Royal Challengers Bangalore to an imposing win over bottom-placed Kings XI Punjab in a rain-truncated IPL clash here on Wednesday night.

Chasing a mammoth 212 to win, KXIP lost wickets at regular intervals to lose by 82 runs via Duckworth Lewis method. The win ensured RCB stay on course for a play-off berth.

Kohli (113 off 50 balls) notched up his fourth century in the ongoing IPL season and also became the only batsman to score more than 800 runs in a single edition. His tally stands at 865 runs from 13 matches.

Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle do the 'Champion' dance after the West Indian's fifty. Pic/AFP
Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle do the 'Champion' dance after the West Indian's fifty. Pic/AFP

Kohli, who had sustained multiple stitches due to his split webbing on left hand during the last match against Kolkata Knight Riders, gestured at it once he reached the three-figure landmark in the 14th over.

The RCB skipper blasted 12 fours and eight sixes as he piled 96 runs in 20 scoring strokes, while his opening partner Chris Gayle smashed a scintillating 32-ball 73 with the help of four boundaries and eight sixes.

The duo butchered the Kings XI Punjab bowlers with a whirlwind 147-run opening stand to lay the foundation for a
huge score.

The hosts then returned to restrict Kings XI for 120 in 14 overs to register their seventh win and reach the second spot in points table with 14 points in 13 matches. They are now tied at 14 points with Kolkata Knight Riders, Mumbai Indians and Gujarat Lions. 

Chasing a mammoth 212 to win, none of the Kings XI batsmen could stitch a partnership as the pressure to hit big shots saw them make their back way to the hut. Wriddhiman Saha (24) was the top-scorer for Punjab.

For Bangalore, spinner Yuzvendra Chahal (4/25) returned with a four-wicket haul, while Sreenath Aravind (2/18) and Shane Watson (2/7) scalped two wickets each.

In the end, Punjab were 120-9 with just one over to go when heavens opened up again and the result of the match was decided by the Duckworth Lewis method.

Earlier, the hosts set 212 target for underdogs Kings XI Punjab in 15 overs.

Put to bat by Kings XI skipper Murali Vijay, who opted to field despite winning the toss, RCB piled up a whopping 211 runs for three wickets.

Skipper Kohli set a new record by scoring his fourth century in this IPL season and Gayle returned to form with an half-century.

Gayle and Kolhi were also involved in a record 147-run partnership for the first wicket in 67 balls, by hitting all over the ground at will from the first over, treating a packed stadium of 25,000 frezined fans with mighty sixes and massive fours.

Desperate efforts by Vijay to break the partnership or get either of them out early failed as Kolhi and Gayle were in full cry and batted with disdain.

While the first 50 came in 4.4 overs of the six-over power play, the first 100 of RCB's innings came in 8.5 overs.

Though Vijay used as many as five bowlers to contain the openers, there was no respite for Kings till Gayle got caught by David Miller of Arshad Patel ball in 11 over when RCB score was147 on the board.

After in-form AB de Villiers was bowled for a duck in 12th over, keeper K.L Rahul joined Kohli to take the score to 199 when the skipper was caught by Miller off Sandeep Sharma ball at 113 comprising 8 sixes and 12 fours in just 50 balls.

Rahul and Kohli were involved in a 45-run third wicket partnership in 15 balls.

Rahul remained till the end at 16 not out.

Patel, Sharma and Abbot shared one wicket each of RCB's batters. 

Brief Score:
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 211-3 in 15 overs (Virat Kohli 113, Chris Gayle 73; Sandeep Sharma 1/29).
Kings XI Punjab: 120-9 in 14 overs (W Saha 24; YS Chahal 4/25). 

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