Mohali | Murali Vijay’s captain knock went in vain as Royal Challengers Bangalore snatched a nerve-wracking 1-run win victory over Kings XI Punjab in an enthralling Indian Premier League encounter here Monday night.
Chasing a target of 176, KXIP were cruising along with Vijay smashing 89 off 57 balls but Chris Jordan managed to hold his nerves as he gave away 15 runs in the final over in which the home team needed 17 runs. The final scorecard was 174 for four.
Needing 4 off the last delivery, Marcus Stoinis (34, 22 balls) could take only two as Virat Kohli was delirious in joy the moment match finished.
The win takes RCB to sixth position with 8 points from 9 games as they still have a chance of qualifying for play-offs while KXIP with six points from 10 games look all but out of the tournament.
The last four overs saw KXIP requiring 40 runs with Vijay looking in great touch before tragedy struck. It was old warhorse Shane Watson (2/22), who delivered the needful as he dug in a short one and Vijay went for the pull. He could not connect it as Yuzvendra Chahal took a well-judged catch at deep mid-wicket boundary. He hit 12 boundaries and a six. The match just slipped away despite Stoinis cameo.
Watson bowled two incredible overs 17th and 19th to to turn things around and fittingly won MoM award.
Hashim Amla (21) and Vijay started on a positive note with the KXIP skipper finding gaps with ease. They added 45 runs before Amla tried to pull Watson as Stuart Binny stationed at the edge of the circle at mid-wicket timed his jump to perfection to take a good catch.
Vijay hit some great shots including a lovely back cut off Watson, an on drive off Binny and a pulled boundary of Chris Jordan.
When Varun Aaron bowled a fast rising delivery, Vijay used the pace to pull it behind square for a six. Along with Wriddhiman Saha (16), he added 43 runs as the pair ran well between the wickets before trouble struck.
Leg spinner Chahal (2/30) dismissed Saha and an out-of-form David Miller (0) with successive deliveries stumped by KL Rahul.
While Rahul fumbled a bit when Saha missed trying to give Chahal the charge, he effected a far smoother stumping when the leggie slided one across Miller, who tried playing a defensive prod.
From 88 for 1, KXIP were reduced to 88 for 3 when Vijay tried to take charge as he hit Jordan for a couple of boundaries.
In the next over, Vijay launched into left-arm spinner Iqbal Abdullah for a couple of boundaries.
In the next over, it was Aaron’s turn to be sliced to deep point boundary while Chahl lost his length and was hit a for a couple of more boundaries.
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