DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Kings XI Punjab grabbed the last seven Sunrisers Hyderabad wickets for just 14 runs to record their fourth successive win in the Indian Premier League on Saturday.
Earlier at Abu Dhabi, Nitish Rana and Sunil Narine plundered half-centuries and legspinner Varun Chakravarthy grabbed the season’s first five-wicket haul as Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Delhi Capitals by 59 runs.
Needing 27 runs off the last four overs with seven wickets in hand, Hyderabad fell short by 12 runs as Chris Jordan (3-17) and Arshdeep Singh (3-23) grabbed six of the last seven wickets and bowled out their rivals for 114 runs in 19.5 overs.
Punjab was earlier restricted to only 126-7 as legspinner Rashid Khan grabbed the key wicket of captain Lokesh Rahul (27) midway through the innings to finish with 2-14. Fast bowlers Jason Holder (2-27) and Sandeep Sharma (2-29) also bowled economical spells.
Punjab’s brittle middle order continued to struggle in the tournament with Glenn Maxwell yet again being dismissed cheaply, this time 12. The Australian’s poor form has seen him score just 102 runs in 11 matches.
Nicholas Pooran gave Punjab some respectability by top scoring with an unbeaten 32.
“Winning is a habit, which we didn’t find in the first half,” Punjab captain Rahul said. “Honestly, I’m speechless. Everybody’s chipped in. Low-scoring games are when you realise the importance of those 10-15 runs scored by batsmen, those diving stops and those tight overs.”
Captain David Warner (35) and Jonny Bairstow (19) gave a solid stand of 56 off 37 balls to Hyderabad before both fell soon after the powerplay.
Manish Pandey (15 off 29 balls) and Vijay Shankar (27 off 27 balls) were strangled by the spinners before Jordan returned in the 17th over and had Pandey caught in the deep.
Arshdeep had Shankar caught behind in the next over, and Jordan removed Holder and Khan in the following over off successive deliveries. Arshdeep wrapped up the innings in the last over as Punjab fielders made brilliant catches.
“It does hurt,” Warner said. “Our bowlers did a fantastic job to restrict them … just got to forget this game and move on. We have to start again next match.”
Punjab, which at one stage was in last place, was fifth.
Hyderabad was sixth.
At Abu Dhabi, Rana, whose father-in-law died on Friday, put the personal turmoil aside to score 81 off 53 balls and Narine, returning after injury and bowling action issues, made 64 off 32 deliveries in Kolkata’s formidable total of 194-6.
Delhi, playing its first day game in this IPL, always lagged behind once Pat Cummins (3-17) uprooted in-form batsman Shikhar Dhawan’s off stump in the second over. Chakravarthy snared 5-20 and Delhi was restricted to 135-9.
Delhi was still second on the table behind defending champion Mumbai Indians. Kolkata was fourth.
“This is surreal,” Chakravarthy said. “The last few games I didn’t get wickets. I wanted to get one or two today, but thank God I got five.”
Delhi skipper Shreyas Iyer’s decision to bowl first seemed to be going in the right direction after fiery fast bowler Anirch Nortje grabbed two early wickets which reduced Kolkata to 42-3 in the eighth over.
But Rana and Narine batted aggressively and raised their 115-run stand in a mere 56 deliveries. The left-handers took 45 runs from offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin’s three overs. Marcus Stoinis went for 41 from his four overs before dismissing Rana and captain Eoin Morgan off the last two balls.
Rana smashed 13 fours and a six before top-edging Stoinis, while Narine hit six fours and four sixes and fell to Kagiso Rabada (2-33) in the 17th over.
Delhi’s run chase faltered early when Cummins had struggling Ajinkya Rahana lbw off the first ball and then Dhawan, who scored centuries in his last two games, could make only 6 before he was clean bowled by the Australian in his second over.
Chakravarthy then hurried the collapse when Rishabh Pant, Shermon Hetmyer, top scorer Iyer with 47, and Marcus Stoinis all holed out in the deep while Axar Patel was clean bowled by the legspinner.
“They outplayed us in pretty much every department,” Iyer said. “We are disappointed with the loss, but I am glad it is happening at this point of time. There are a lot of learnings from this game.”
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