IPL 2021: RCB beat Punjab Kings by 6 runs, seal play-off berth

IPL 2021: RCB beat Punjab Kings by 6 runs, seal play-off berth

Sharjah, October 3, 2021

Royal Challengers Bangalore beat Punjab Kings by six runs in the 48th match of the IPL 2021 and sealed their play-off berth at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium here on Sunday.

With this win, RCB now have 16 points and became the third team after Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Delhi Capitals (DC) to have made it to the last-four stage.

Riding on Glenn Maxwell's quickfire fifty (57 off 33 balls), RCB posted a total of 164 for 7 in 20 overs. Apart from Maxwell, Devdutt Padikkal also played a vital knock of 40 runs for RCB.

In reply, openers KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal came all guns blazing and gave Punjab Kings a solid start. The duo added 91 runs for the opening stand.

Shahbaz Ahmed, in the 12th over of the innings, got the much-needed breakthrough for RCB when he dismissed Rahul.

Yuzvendra Chahal then picked three wickets including the big scalp of Mayank Agarwal and brought RCB back into the contest. From there on, Punjab lost wickets at regular intervals.

In the end, Punjab could score 158 for 6 in 20 overs and fell short of the target by 6 runs.

Earlier, after winning the toss and opting to bat first, openers Virat Kohli and Padikkal gave RCB a flying start. The duo played some beautiful shots and took RCB to 55/0 at the end of the powerplay.

However, during the process, Kohli was given a few lifelines by the Punjab team. In the 4th over of the innings bowled by Ravi Bishnoi, Virat stepped out of his crease and KL Rahul missed a relatively easy stumping chance to dismiss the RCB captain. Very soon, Sarfaraz Khan dropped Kohli's catch at mid-wicket.

The 8th over, bowled by Ravi Bishnoi, was the most eventful one when Rahul and Punjab Kings were left baffled after a caught-behind appeal was turned down against Devdutt Padikkal.

Padikkal, who was struggling to read the leg-spinner's googlies, went for a reverse sweep but was not able to execute the shot properly and got an under-edge.

Both, Bishnoi and Rahul went up in appeal immediately but the on-field umpire did not give it out, forcing Rahul to go for the review. The replays showed the ball kissed Padikkal's gloves before crashing into KL Rahul's gloves. However, the third umpire deemed it not out and went with the on-field call, leaving Rahul and Bishnoi frustrated.

Thereafter, Punjab captain Rahul brought Moises Henriques (3/12) into the attack and he wreaked havoc. First, he dismissed Kohli (25) and then got rid of Daniel Christian in the next ball to bring Punjab back in the game. In his next over, Henriques struck again to remove a set Padikkal for 40.

After losing the wickets of Kohli, Christian, and Padikkal in quick succession, Bangalore were at 73/3 and in big trouble. But, Maxwell and AB de Villiers batted well and stitched a good partnership to bring RCB back on track.

While Maxwell was the aggressor, de Villiers batted cautiously. Continuing his brilliant form, Maxwell cleverly targeted the short boundary and hit a few big sixes to complete his fifty off just 29 balls in the 18th over. De Villiers (23 off 18) also hit Arshdeep Singh for a six in the first ball of the over, before getting out to him in the next ball.

Mohammed Shami (3/39) put the brakes on RCB's run-rate in the 20th over as he dismissed Maxwell (57 off 33), Shahbaz Ahmed (8), and George Garton in the same over.

In the end, Bangalore posted a total of 164/7 in 20 overs, which is their highest total this season in Sharjah.

Brief scores:

Royal Challengers Bangalore: 164/7 (Glenn Maxwell 57 off 33 balls, Devdutt Padikkal 40 off 38 balls, Moises Henriques 3/12, Mohammed Shami 3/39) beat Punjab Kings 158 for 6 in 20 overs ( KL Rahul 39 off 35 balls, Mayank Agarwal 57, Yuzvendra Chahal 3/29)

NNN

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