A resurgent Kings XI Punjab will face the top-placed Delhi Capitals who have emerged as the strongest contenders in the tournament so far with their sheer consistency.
Kings XI Punjab have finally seen a tremendous turnaround in fortunes and have won their last two games on the trot against Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians. We are still catching our breath from the first ever second Super Over in IPL history in which Kings XI Punjab finally emerged victorious.
Kings XI had looked good in the tournament right from the onset but were unfortunate to loose out some very close games and have loitered around at the bottom position for most of the tournament. But after those two impressive victories, they have bounced back in emphatic fashion.
They have leapfrogged CSK and now sit at the seventh position on the points table. The fact that they defeated defending champions and frontrunners Mumbai Indians, while still dwindling at the bottom position is an ode to the competitiveness of the IPL which justifies it’s tag as the best T20 league in the world.
After KXIP had tied Mumbai Indians total of 176, the game went into the Super Over. KXIP batting first, were restricted to just 5/2 by Jasprit Bumrah. Mohammad Shami then matched his compatriot Bumrah’s excellence by limiting Mumbai to 5/1 – thus tying the first Super Over.
In the second Super Over, Kieron Pollard powered Mumbai to 11/1 but in reply, KXIP duo of Gayle and Agarwal came out on top in just 4 balls to finally get the crucial victory.
Kings XI fought their hearts out and got the crucial two points. From here on, they have to win every single match to reach the IPL playoffs. Their opening duo of skipper KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal currently occupy the top two spots in the race for the Orange Cap.
This recharged side has won their two games ever since they included the ‘Universe Boss’ Chris Gayle in their playing XI against RCB. The sheer impact that the West Indian adds to the table could be seen by this revival from KXIP. As soon as he was drafted into the XI, Gayle immediately booked his place with a mature half-century against RCB.
Delhi Capitals, on the other hand, have a completely different tale. They, along with Mumbai Indians, have been the strongest contenders of the tournament thus far. In their last outing against CSK, Shikhar Dhawan scored his maiden IPL ton while all-rounder Axar Patel hit three sixes in Ravindra Jadeja’s last over to take his side to a thrilling victory.
Almost all of Capitals’ players are in good form with their pace spearhead Kagiso Rabada wearing the Purple Cap with 19 wickets to his name. While Rishabh Pant’s hamstring injury came as a setback for them, they will now be boosted by the star wicket-keeper’s return.
It must be noted that the last time these two sides met – the match went into the Super Over, in what was just the second game of IPL 2020. Thus, with the two in-form squads, this one promises to be a roller-coaster ride.