In what was a final chance for Punjab to qualify for the knockouts, they were crushed by the brilliant bowling from Chennai in the middle overs, not letting them score a par score, despite Deepak Hooda’s 30-ball 62. Ruturaj Gaikwad with his elegant innings ensured that Chennai won the match easily.
KXIP 8/10 - SOME CLASSY STUFF THERE! Right off the gates, Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul got Punjab off to a good start with some classical shots, timing the ball like slicing butter with a hot knife. However, Mayank’s wicket towards the end did slow them down a bit, ending the powerplay on 53/1.
CSK 10/10 - CLINICAL! Chennai got off to the best possible start they could have hoped for, scoring 57 runs without the loss of any wicket. Never looking in a hurry, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Faf du Plessis timed the ball to perfection and played classical shots to put Chennai in control of the match.
KXIP 4/10 - WHAT AN ABSOLUTE MESS! Totalling just 42 runs for 3 wickets in 9 overs after quite a good start, Punjab lost their way in the middle overs. They lost wickets at regular intervals, never allowing themselves to accelerate. They don’t seem to forget their habit of choking in high-pressure situations, eventually ending on 95/4.
CSK 9/10 - After surviving the catch scare, Ruturaj Gaikwad played brilliantly to ensure that Chennai stayed on track while chasing a below-par total. Despite a hiccup in the form of du Plessis’s wicket, Chennai paced the chase in a clinical fashion, remaining calm through the middle overs, ending on 118/1.
KXIP 8/10 - HOODA YOU BEAUTY! Punjab were looking all but out of the match, but a brilliant inning from Deepak Hooda brought Punjab back in the match, taking them to a total of 153/6. Punjab definitely have turned the momentum in their favour going into the break, scoring 58 runs in the death overs after below-par middle overs. Match on.
CSK 10/10 - PUNJAB’S DREAMS DESTROYED SUCCESSFULLY. By the time things came to the death overs the match was in Chennai’s favour by a huge margin, needing only 34 runs to win the match. Along with their departure, Chennai ensured that they ruined the late playoffs dreams of Punjab and knocked them out of the tournament, winning the match with 9 wickets to spare.
Shardul Thakur is a quality bowler
Shardul Thakur is not someone who always gets his due credit for the kind of quality he possesses in his bowling, rarely in the spotlight. The way he has matured from a bowler who regularly gives loose balls to a bowler who uses his variations really well is highly commendable. In this season, he has regularly outfoxed batsmen with his knuckleballs, being his go-to ball in crunch situations, alongside his cross-seamer. Against Punjab as well, he was on top of his game as he used his slower deliveries with perfection after initially getting hit for two fours. After giving 10 runs in the first over, he came back strongly by giving just 7 runs in the next two overs along with the crucial wicket of Nicholas Pooran. Cramping Pooran for the room, Shardul forced the West Indian to play a non-existent pull shot, which ended in MS Dhoni’s hands. He surely seems to be a bowler that uses his mind, making himself extremely useful in the limited-overs format.
Deepak Hooda is key to Punjab balance
Having already played 67 matches, Deepak Hooda is not new to the high-pressure situations in IPL. Although he has not been consistent, he has played several crucial knocks batting in the lower middle order, making him a good asset for any team. However, after being included in the Punjab squad for IPL 2020, he has not been used quite extensively by Punjab. He has played only 6 matches this season, coming out unbeaten on 3 and not getting to bat on 2 of those. He provides a good balance to the top-heavy batting lineup of Punjab, which was quite evident in today’s match, where he single-handedly rescued Punjab after being terrible in the middle overs, scoring an unbeaten 62 off 30 balls, which included 4 sixes and 3 fours. Also, his technique looks quite fluent, proving that he is constantly working his game, making him a key prospect for Punjab.
Ruturaj Gaikwad shows Shane Watson the door
Coming on the back of two ducks in his first three innings in IPL, Ruturaj Gaikwad was certainly not looking like the batsmen who destroyed bowlers in the domestic competitions. Even Dhoni had mentioned that youngsters have not been able to show the ‘spark’ he hoped for, taking a shot at the youngster. However, he came back strongly with two back-to-back fifties and proved his worth to his critics. He looked absolutely fluent opening the batting, being the only ray of sunshine in Chennai’s bad run so far. In this match as well, he continued his good form from the previous matches and got Chennai off to a good start, scoring his third consecutive fifty. He supported Faf du Plessis and was really rotating the strike quite well and hitting bad balls over the ropes. He supported Faf du Plessis really well - rotating the strike regularly and hitting bad balls over the ropes. He is certainly displaying the consistency that he is known for in the domestic circuit, making a strong claim to be the permanent opener for Chennai in the coming seasons as well.
Chennai were cruising in their chase and Punjab desperately needed wickets to come back in the match, which they almost did before the third umpire dismissed the catch of Mandeep Singh. After the dubious decision, Punjab could never come into the match as Chennai went on to win the game pretty easily.
Match Frenzy O Meter - Average
The match that promised to be a thriller, given that Punjab had to win the match in order to stay in the tournament, everything went in Chennai’s favour excluding Deepak Hooda’s 30-ball 62, making it an almost one-sided match with few good moments in between.