A terrific performance from their top-order saw Punjab beat Bangalore and end their five-match losing streak.
Here are the key talking points from the contest:
Rahul and Agarwal – the best opening duo in the league
KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal continued their incredible form with the bat with the skipper scoring a match-winning fifty and the latter smashing a quickfire 45 off 25 balls. Rahul became the first batsman to breach the 400-mark for the season while Agarwal, too, is closing in with 382 runs to his name. Both sit atop the list of the highest run-scorers of the season and Punjab will be hopeful that their openers can continue in the same vein and drag them from the bottom of the table to a place in the playoffs.
Finch’s flat impact
Opener Aaron Finch’s terrible run with the bat continued as the Australian scored just 20 off 17 before being bowled over by spinner Murugan Ashwin. The 33-year-old has scored just 191 runs this season at a terrible strike rate of 113.69 and a dismal average of 23.87. Finch simply isn’t offering much to Bangalore right now and it may in the team’s best interest to try and shuffle their playing XI ahead of their upcoming match.
A Gayle Storm in the desert
Playing his first match of the season, Chris Gayle showcased just why he is one of the, if not the greatest batsmen in the T20 format with a brilliant 50 that saw him smash five sixes. The big West Indian started slow, as is typical of him, scoring just six of the first balls that he faced, but a couple of sixes against Washington Sundar in the 13th over got him going, as he scored 47 off 31 balls after that slow start. Given Rahul and Mayank’s terrific form, Gayle’s innings was a welcome sight for Punjab who will now look to build on this win and climb off the foot of the table.
Morris continues his magic
South African all-rounder Chris Morris delivered yet another sensational performance for Bangalore, scoring 25 with the bat and giving away just 22 with the ball in a brilliant all-round showing. Morris faced just eight deliveries and smashed three sixes and a boundary that helped Bangalore post 171 on the board. Despite Morris’ heroics with both bat and ball, Bangalore fell short, but they will take solace in the South African’s terrific form.
Feature image courtesy: Twitter.com / Indian T20 League