Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) registered their first win of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 season by defeating Royal Challengers Bangalore by 97 runs at the Dubai International Stadium. KXIP captain KL Rahul slammed 132 not out from 69 deliveries, helping KXIP reach 206/3. They posted a 207-run target for RCB after losing the toss. The 28-year-old was adjudged Man of the Match after the win. He also became the fastest Indian to reach 2000 runs, doing so in his 60th innings. This record was formely held by Sachin Tendulkar, who reached 2000 IPL runs in 63 innings. Speaking about his performance the Indian cricketer said, “As a leader it is important to lead from the front. It is a complete team performance.”
Rahul went on to say that KXIP don’t rely on individuals and are a collective unit. “During the toss is the only time I feel like a captain and otherwise I balance being a player and the captain,” he quipped during the post-match ceremony.
Praising Ravi Bishnoi for his three wickets in the match, Rahul said that the youngster has a lot of energy, which is crucial for the team. “As complete a performance as it can get. He has a lot of heart. He has a lot of fight in him,” Rahul said of Bishnoi.
“Every time I throw the ball to him, he wants to get in the fight. He was a little nervous bowling to Finch and AB, but showed a lot of heart”, he added.
Praising his team’s bowling unit, Rahul said that the bowlers knew wickets were needed up front and performed admirably.
Losing captain Virat Kohli felt that he needed to take the brunt of the blame. Kohli dropped Rahul twice and could only score one run off five deliveries.
Sheldon Cottrell took Kohli’s wicket. He also said that RCB need to work on their mistakes and not repeat it again.
“There are days when you have these kinds of things happening. Just have to accept them,” Kohli said.
“We’ve had a good game (and) we’ve had a bad game. Time to move on. We need to learn to plug those little mistakes”, he said.
In their next match, KXIP face Rajasthan Royals on September 27. Meanwhile, RCB face Mumbai Indians on September 28.
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