T20 2018: Rajasthan stay in hunt after 15-run win over Punjab
Englishman Jos Buttler's 82 helps hosts beat Punjab by 15 runs to keep Rajasthan Royals' playoffs hopes alive
Rajasthan' Jos Buttler en route his 58-ball 82 against Kings XI Punjab at Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur yesterday. Pic/AFP
KL Rahul's fighting unbeaten 70-ball 95 went in vain as Rajasthan Royals beat his team Kings XI Punjab by 15 runs in a crucial tie at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium here yesterday. KXIP always looked in trouble chasing 159 after losing big-hitting opener Chris Gayle for just one in the second over.
Skipper R Ashwin promoted himself up the order, but to no avail as he was dismissed for a duck with the score reading 14-2 in the third over. The visitors failed to make a comeback thereafter, thus managing 143-7 in 20 overs. With this win, RR jumped two places to take the sixth spot in the points table with eight points from 10 games. KXIP remained static at third position.
Spinner Krishnappa Gowtham was the pick of the bowlers for RR with 2-12, while pacers Jofra Archer, Jaydev Unadkat, Ben Stokes and spinner Ish Sodhi claim one wicket each. Earlier, Jos Buttler led the way with a blazing 58-ball 82 before KXIP bowlers fought back and restricted RR to 158-8. Pacer Andre Tye was the most successful KXIP bowler, returning figures of 4-34, while mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman picked up 2-21 in four overs.
Opening the innings, Buttler began Royals' innings in earnest, hitting Marcus Stoinis for two successive boundaries in the first over. The Englishman looked in rampaging form as he smashed Axar Patel for a six over extra cover before going inside out to collect a boundary. Skipper Ajinkya Rahane was dismissed by Tye, who fooled the batsman with a knuckle ball, inducing an edge to extra cover. But Buttler continued his onslaught on the Rajasthan bowlers as he picked two consecutive boundaries off Tye. Krishnappa Gowtham, too, fell quickly as he was sent back by Stoinis in the seventh over.
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