GUWAHATI: A captain's knock of an unbeaten 85 by Shikhar Dhawan along with Prabhsimran Singh's maiden fifty helped Punjab Kings (PBKS) to beat Rajasthan Royals (RR) by 5 runs in Match 8 of the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) here at ACA Stadium on Wednesday.
Invited to bat first, Punjab Kings set a 198-run target for Rajasthan Royals who played their first home match here. RR could managed 192 in allotted overs losing 7 wickets. With his unbeaten 85 off 56 balls, Dhawan completed his 50th 50-plus score in his IPL career. He now has 48 half-centuries and two tons, while Jason Holder was the pick of the bowlers for PBKS, picking up two wickets after conceding 29 runs in his four-over quota.
Prabhsimran gave PBKS a strong start, hitting Trent Boult for a boundary over the covers and six off the bowling of K.M Asif in the first two overs. Shikhar Dhawan then hit the paddle in the third over, slamming back-to-back boundaries to Boult.
Prabhsimran continued with his merry ways as he slammed Asif for three boundaries and a six, taking 18 runs off the fourth over. He followed it up with two fours against Ravichandran Ashwin in the next over.
Jason Holder created a chance to dismiss Prabhsimran, who ended up slicing the hit and the ball swirled in the air, but Devdutt Padikkal lost balance while trying to clutch, the ball hit his hands and went away. With just seven coming off the sixth over, PBKS posted 63 for no loss in the Power-play.
After Power-play, RR bowlers kept PBKS' run rate in check with just two big hits coming in the next four overs. In between, Prabhsimran completed his maiden IPL half-century with a single off 28 deliveries in the eighth over before falling to Holder in the tenth over for 60.
Prabhsimran looked to slap it but ended up slicing the ball and it went aerial and Buttler plucked a sensational catch, diving forward after running in from long-off, ending the 90-run opening partnership. Halfway through PBKS were 92 for 1.
Jitesh shifted the gears in the 12th over, hitting Chahal for two successive boundaries followed by a brilliant six by Dhawan, who launched the ball powerfully over long-on, collecting 18 runs off the over. An over later, Dhawan brought up his 48th IPL fifty with a boundary.
Dhawan and Jitesh accelerated the run rate with their calculated batting and stitched a 66-run stand for the second wicket, which Chahal broke in the 16th over, dismissing Jitesh for 27.
With 45 runs coming off the last three overs for the loss of two wickets, PBKS posted a total of 197 for four in 20 overs.
In reply, Rajasthan Royals lost Yashasvi Jaiswal (11), Ravi Ashwin (0), who went to open the innings, and Jos Buttler (19) inside power play. Captain Sanju Samson and Devdutt Padikkal took the score to 91 in 11 overs. Samson returned back after scoring 42 runs from 25 balls. Home star Riyan Parag started to play few big shots when the required run rate crossed 12 runs per over. Trying to another big shot, he was taken by Aussie pacer Nathan Ellis after scoring 20 from 12 balls. Ellis then claimed vital wicket of Padikkal (21) in the same over.
Dhruv Jurel and Shimron Hetmyer put on another blazing partnership and reduced the target to 34 runs in last two overs. The duo then managed 18 runs from Arshdeep Singh’s over.
Left-arm seamer Sam Curran came to bowl the final over. The duo took 3 runs from first two balls, and then hatmyer ran out in the third ball after scoring 36 runs from 18 balls. The pair added 62 runs from 27 balls for the 7th wickets. Finally RR could managed 192 runs losing 7 wickets. Jurel remained unbeaten at 32 runs off 15 balls.
Brief scores: Punjab Kings 197/4 in 20 overs (Shikhar Dhawan 86 not out, Prabhsimran Singh 60; Jason Holder 2-29) beat Rajasthan Royals 192/7 in 20 overs (Sanju Samson 42, Devdutt Padikkal 21, Riyan Parag 20, Dhruv Jurel 32no, Shimron Hetmyer 36, Nathan Ellis 4/30, Arshdeep Singh 2/47).