Kings XI Punjab captain KL Rahul believed that they were a better team than their position in the points table of the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier (IPL) after thrashing Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Thursday.
After what felt like an eternity, Kings XI Punjab finally managed to get back to winning ways in the current season of the cash-rich tournament when they defeated RCB by eight wickets at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
The batsmen powered them to the thumping verdict after five straight defeats. It was the KL Rahul-led team’s second victory of the season and they currently languish at the bottom of the table.
“We are a far better side than where we are in the points table. Towards the end it just got too close for comfort, happy that we crossed the line,” said Rahul in the post-match presentation ceremony in which he was also declared player of the match for his unbeaten 61 off 49 balls.
“It’s (heart beat) the highest it can be. I have done yo-yo tests and been in some close games throughout my career but this was…I don’t even have words. We knew we had to scrape and get over the line once and this gives us a lot confidence,” he said.
The match featured Chris Gayle for the first time this season. Coming in at no.3 instead of his usual opening position, Gayle scored 53 and put up a 93-run stand with Rahul for the second wicket.
“It’s important to keep the lion hungry. Wherever he bats, he’s dangerous. He’s taken it up as a challenge as well. When he comes in at no.3, he is still the same player. It worked out today hopefully he will carry on like this,” said Rahul.
After restricting RCB to a moderate 171/6 at the batting heaven in Sharjah, Punjab were bolstered by skipper Rahul’s (61 not out) and Chris Gayle’s (53) half-centuries.
Opener Mayank Agarwal’s blistering 25-ball knock of 45 runs had also contributed to the cause before Punjab finished the chase in the very last ball of their innings.