Gilchrist powers KXIP to six-wicket win over CSK in Dharamsala
By IPL desk
Mumbai 17 May 2012
Kings XI Punjab kept their hopes for a berth in the DLF IPL 2012 playoffs alive with a six-wicket win against the Chennai Super Kings. When the IPL made its way to scenic Dharamsala for the first time this season, the Punjab franchise restricted CSK to a below par score of 120, after which they chased down the target in 16.3 overs. Adam Gilchristmade a return to the KXIP playing XI for this match, having strained his hamstring on April 18 in the game against the Kolkata Knight Riders at Mohali. The KXIP captain won the toss and opted to bowl first on the Dharamsala wicket.
It was a poor start by CSK, who lost both their openers, Murali Vijay (10) andMike Hussey (7), to some good swing bowling by Praveen Kumar. The KXIP pacer had both batsmen caught by Gilchrist in successive overs behind the stumps. The visitors’ situation worsened as Suresh Raina, who hit Azhar Mahmood for a couple of sixes, was also caught behind by Gilchrist off the all-rounder’s bowling in the eighth over. The visitors were 42 for three at the fall of Raina’s wicket.
An indication of CSK’s troubles against the Punjab attack was the fact that their batsmen managed only 45 runs in the first 10 overs. Parvinder Awana then had the visitors struggling when he got MS Dhoni (6) caught by Nitin Saini at third-man in the 11th over. Awana picked up another scalp in the 16th over when he had Ravindra Jadeja (13) caught by Saini, standing at point this time. At this stage, the CSK score read a disappointing 78 for five in 15.4 overs.
The defending champions may have well finished around the 100-run mark, but a 43-ball 48 from Dwayne Bravo and an eight-ball 14 from Albie Morkel lifted them to 120 for seven in 20 overs.
Chasing 121 to win, KXIP had a solid start with Gilchrist and Mandeep Singh brining up the 50-run mark in just 6.3 overs. Punjab’s situation, however, took a nosedive after that as they lost Mandeep (24), Nitin Saini (1) and David Hussey (9) with their score only progressing from 51 to 69.
But with Adam Gilchrist playing a captain’s knock, and bringing up his first half-century of the competition, the hosts managed to get to the winning score in 16.3 overs for the loss of four wickets. Gilchrist remained unbeaten on 64 with nine fours and two sixes.
The win gives Kings XI Punjab 16 points from 15 matches and leaves them in fifth position in the points table. CSK have finished playing all their league matches and have 17 points from 16 games. Also, as a result of KXIP’s win the Kolkata Knight Riders (19 points) have qualified for the playoffs.