Underdogs Kings XI Punjab scored an upset seven-run victory over defending champions Chennai Super Kings in an Indian Premier League match,here today.
Defending a target of 157,Punjab bowlers led by all-rounder Azhar Mahmood held their own at the death as they restricted the much-vaunted CSK batting line-up to 149 for eight,at MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Chennai stay put on nine points from as many matches while KXIP are on eight points but occupy the eighth position despite their fourth win.
Credit to Parvinder Awana,Praveen Kumar and Mahmood who bowled the final three overs when CSK needed 39 runs which is considered a gettable target in the shortest format. The three medium pacers bowled a fuller length hardly giving any room to the opposition batsmen who stuttered and lost wickets at regular intervals.
Mahmood played an useful hand at the rear scoring a quickfire 18 off 12 balls and then had impressive figures of three for 25 which also included the prize-scalp of Albie Morkel who was accounted in the first delivery of the final over.
Chennai got off to blistering start with a 47-run opening stand between Subramaniam Badrinath and Faf du Plessis in 5.3 overs. In-form Du Plessis made 29 off 20 balls with the help of three fours and two sixes while Badrinath’s 18-ball 25
consisted of four boundaries.
Both set the tone for the chase before Du Plessis was caught and bowled by Mahmood. Mahmood dismissed Badrinath in his second spell when the batsman was caught at the square leg boundary.
The dismissal of Badrinath in the eighth over dried up runs for the defending champions. Suresh Raina (15) and Wriddhiman Saha (6) found the going tough against KXIP’s spin and pace duo of Piyush Chawla and Awana.