Chris Gayle (62*) and KL Rahul (60) continued their glorious run of form and slammed respective fifties to guide Kings XI Punjab to a massive 9-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders in a rain-hit match at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata, on Saturday. Chasing a daunting total of 192, Punjab openers got off to the best start possible as they hit Kolkata bowlers to all corners off the park from the word go. Both Rahul and Gayle matched each other shot for shot as it was raining fours and sixes at this historic venue.
Earlier, a scintillating half-century from Chris Lynn and good cameos from Dinesh Karthik and Robin Uthappa ensured that Kolkata reached a good total of 191/7 in their designated 20 overs. KKR got off to the worst start possible as mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman dismissed the dangerous Sunil Narine (1) in the second over of the innings itself. Robin Uthappa then joined Chris Lynn in the middle and the duo started to take the attack to the KXIP bowlers.
The duo dealt in boundaries for most parts of their partnership and took the home side over the 50-run mark in no time. Uthappa (34) was finally dismissed by KXIP skipper R Ashwin in the 9th over the innings after he and Lynn had put on a partnership worth 72 runs for the second wicket.
Lynn continued his hard-hitting on the other end and he notched up his fourth IPL fifty. The duo upped the ante and kept scoring the boundaries and at one point it seemed that KKR will go over the 200-run mark very easily.
However, Lynn's (74) dismissal brought the curtains down any such hope as he became Andrew Tye's first wicket of the day. Andre Russell (10) soon followed suit as he became Barinder Sran's first scalp of the day.
Karthik and Shubhman Gill added a brisk 26-run partnership for the sixth wicket but the KKR skipper had to head back into the hut after being dismissed by Sran for 43. KXIP bowlers pulled the match a bit right at the end as KKR were restricted to a score of under 200.