The KL Rahul-led Team Lucknow suffered an embarrassing 10-wicket defeat at the hands of Team Hyderabad in a crucial Indian T20 League 2024 match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Hyderabad on Wednesday, May 8.

Opting to bat first, Team Lucknow lost Quinton de Kock and Marcus Stoinis as the visitors were reduced to 21/2 in 4.2 overs.

At the other end, captain KL Rahul also struggled to get going in what seemed to be a two-paced pitch in Hyderabad.

Rahul later scored just 29 runs off 33 balls at a below-par strike rate of 87.88 before he fell to Hyderabad captain Pat Cummins. He hit just one four and a six in his knock.

Lucknow soon lost another wicket as all-rounder Krunal Pandya departed for a 21-ball 24 after an unfortunate run-out.

In desperate need of a partnership, Ayush Badoni joined Nicholas Pooran at the crease. The duo resurrected Lucknow’s innings as they stitched an important partnership.

Badoni slammed unbeaten 55 runs off 30 balls while Pooran scored 48 not out off 26 balls. Their 99-run stand for the fifth wicket helped Lucknow post a respectable total of 165/4 in their 20 overs. 

In reply, Hyderabad openers Abhishek Sharma and Travis Head went on a rampage as they chased down the required target in just 9.4 overs, breaking several records in another six-fest.

While Head clobbered 89 not out off just 30 balls, Abhishek was not far too behind as he slammed an unbeaten 28-ball 75.

Hyderabad’s 167/0 in 9.4 overs is now the highest total at the halfway mark of an uninterrupted innings in the Indian T20 League.

Having overhauled the target with 62 balls to spare, it is now the earliest a team has chased down a 150+ target, breaking the previous record held by Brisbane Heat in their chase of 157 against Melbourne Stars in BBL 2018-19 season.

After their humiliating defeat, Lucknow owner Sanjiv Goenka was caught having an animated chat with captain KL Rahul at the stadium. Here’s Sanjiv Goenka-KL Rahul spat explained.

Sanjiv Goenka-KL Rahul spat explained

In a video that went viral, Lucknow owner Sanjiv Goenka lashed out at his captain KL Rahul after the embarrassing loss in Hyderabad.

While the exact conversation between the owner and captain was not clear, it was evident Sanjiv Goenka wasn’t pleased with his team’s performance.

Goenka seemed to be in an animated mode and was seen gesticulating wildly while Rahul kept his composure in the video. 

Additionally, the 10-wicket loss has further dented Lucknow’s Indian T20 League 2024 playoffs chances, which also affected their net run-rate (-0.769).

Meanwhile, Sanjiv Goenka’s public outburst at KL Rahul was heavily criticised by ex-players and fans.

“The owner is incredibly passionate. His squad has been taken to cleaners, and emotions have escalated. You believe that these discussions ought to take place in private. There are cameras everywhere and everything is captured. KL Rahul would now attend press conferences and other events, possibly providing the explanation of the topics addressed,” former South Africa captain Graeme Smith said on JioCinema.

“It was evident that LSG was playing a more cautious style of cricket while SRH were dominating in the field from the first ball. Without a doubt, there was a noticeable difference between it and the way Sunrisers play. He is conveying his dissatisfaction,” former New Zealand coach Mike Hesson was quoted as saying on Jio Cinema.

Earlier in 2017, Sanjiv Goenka was in the headlines after the owner decided to remove MS Dhoni as captain of the now-defunct Pune franchise in the Indian T20 League. 

Under MS Dhoni, Pune had finished seventh in their debut season in 2016 with just five wins in 14 matches. 

Furthermore, Dhoni also struggled with the bat as he scored 284 runs in 14 matches.

“Dhoni has not stepped down. We have appointed Steve Smith as the skipper for the upcoming season. Frankly speaking, we did not have a good last season and we wanted someone young to lead the side and revamp it ahead of the upcoming Season 10," Goenka was quoted as saying by PTI.

With the Indian T20 League heading into a mega auction this year, it will be interesting to see whether KL Rahul will be met with the same fate as Dhoni in 2017.

Photo credit: Alamy