Kings XI Punjab began this season’s Indian Premier League campaign with a convincing win over Rising Puner Supergiant by 6 wickets with an over to spare. Glenn Maxwell, after the winning the toss invited RPS to bat first and the Punjab bowlers didn’t really disappoint their captain as they restricted Pune to a total of 163 runs in 20 overs. Later the Preity Zinta-owned side grabbed a win with ease in Indore.
Left-arm spinner Axar Patel while talking to IPL website hailed his team’s first win and opening their account in this edition.
“A winning start was much needed for us as we weren’t really able to grab something good in the last two seasons. So backing up the confidence and gaining it back was a big task at our disposal”. “Moreover, the combination of the bowlers and the batsmen has clicked nicely for us.”
“The kind of game play the bowlers showed during our practice matches was pretty good. Glenn Maxwell was also happy with the execution of the bowlers on a flat wicket and in the first game too they showed mettle and it proved good for us”, Patel said.
Talking about Ben Stokes’ dismissal, Axar said that he wasn’t really expecting the captain to throw the ball at him in the 18th over as the left-arm pacer T. Natarajan was still left with one over.
“I was standing at deep mid-wicket and didn’t really had an idea that the ball would be thrown towards me. Natarajan was also left with one over of his so I thought, the captain would go for the pace bowler but the kind of trust the skipper showed on me was good”. “My plan was to confuse the batsmen and bowl in different areas with variety”. “I bowled one on to the pads while one outside the off-stump and I executed my plan and scalped a wicket which prevented them from scoring big.”
Patel was later promoted in the batting order during the chase. He later explained that the RPS franchise side consisted of two leggie in their bowling line so being a left-hander it was easy for his to tackle them.
“They had two leg-spinners in the line up so Virender Sehwag emphasised on sending an Indian batsman in because of facing them in a better and I’m a lefty and can play a leg-spinner in a better way so I guess that’s why I was promoted in the batting order.”
“Back of the mind I had an idea that I have to perform well. I was not 100% confident prior to this game but now I am and looking forward to the tournament”, he added.
Kings XI Punjab are scheduled to lock horns with Royal Challengers Bangalore at their home ground on Monday.