India News Sport Sports

RCB Revives Playoff Chances, PBKS Out

RCB’s Playoff Hopes Stay Afloat with Fourth Straight Victory, PBKS Join Mumbai Indians in Tournament Exit…reports Asian Lite News

Virat Kohli’s majestic 92 off 47 balls, coupled with a collective bowling effort helped Royal Challengers Bengaluru get a 60-run win over Punjab Kings in Match 58 of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 at the HPCA Stadium here on Thursday. The result means RCB keep their Playoff hopes alive with their fourth win on the trot, while PBKS become the second team after Mumbai Indians to be eliminated from the tournament.

Kohli hit seven fours and six maximums at a strike rate of 195.74 in his vintage knock which also took him past the 600-run mark in the IPL 2024. He was ably supported by Rajat Patidar’s 55, his fourth fifty of this season as RCB posted 241/7, their fourth-highest total in the tournament.

For PBKS, pacer Harshal Patel took 3-38, taking his IPL 2024 wickets tally to 20, while debutant fast-bowler Vidwath Kaverappa took 2-36, including a terrific Power-play spell, though the hosts were sloppy in their fielding. PBKS had a glimmer of hope to overhaul the total via a 65-run partnership between Jonny Bairstow and Rilee Rossouw. Though Rossouw made 61, none of PBKS’s batters stood up as they were bowled out for 181 in 17 overs.

Kohli could have been out on the third ball of the innings if Ashutosh Sharma had not dropped a difficult catch at point off Kaverappa. Faf du Plessis got going with back-to-back fours through extra-cover off Kaverappa, who had the last laugh by having the RCB skipper hole out to deep point in the third over. In the same over of Kaverappa, Kohli got another life on 10 when Rilee Rossouw dropped another difficult catch at extra cover. Kohli and Will Jacks hit three boundaries collectively to take 16 runs off Sam Curran in the fourth over before Kaverappa had the latter sweeping to short fine leg.

But Kaverappa had to see the third catch dropped by PBKS off his bowling, as Patidar’s chance was shelled by Harshal Patel at deep fine leg while on zero. Patidar smacked Harshal for three boundaries in a 12-run sixth over, before he and Kohli took a six each in Kaverappa’s final over. Patidar stepped up the attack against spinners by smacking Rahul Chahar for three sixes in his first over and was given another life when Jonny Bairstow was late to react to a catch behind. He would get his fifty in 21 balls when he pulled Sam Curran over short fine-leg for six, before nicking behind to keeper off the left-arm pacer.

Following a 33-minute rain and hail interruption, Kohli got his fifty in 32 balls with a vintage flick through mid-wicket for four off Liam Livingstone. He continued to nail authoritative boundaries mixed with nonchalance and vintage stroke-play to the delight of fans chanting ‘Kohli, Kohli’. But Kohli fell eight runs short of his second century this season when he sliced an Arshdeep Singh delivery to deep third man in the 18th over. Dinesh Karthik hit three quick boundaries before holing out to long-on off Harshal, who castled Mahipal Lomror and had Cameron Green miscuing in the deep on the last ball of the innings.

RCB had a superb start to their defence as Swapnil Singh trapped Prabhsimran Singh lbw on the fourth ball. Bairstow hit four boundaries and a six in his 16-ball 27, before falling to Lockie Ferguson on the second last ball of the powerplay. Rossouw kept PBKS in the hunt by smashing boundaries at will to hit his first fifty of the competition, which he reached by thumping a six over Green’s head. After getting some attention from the physio for an injury, Rossouw holed out to long off against Karn Sharma, who went on to castle Jitesh Sharma.

Though Shashank Singh was smashing boundaries, it wasn’t enough for PBKS as Liam Livingstone was caught at cover for a duck, off a leading edge against Swapnil. Shashank himself needed attention from the physio for a shoulder injury and was run out by a direct hit fired by Kohli from deep mid-wicket on the very next ball, falling for 19-ball 37. After that, PBKS never recovered as Ashutosh was trapped lbw by Siraj, followed by Ferguson knocking over Sam Curran. Siraj came back to take out the remaining two wickets and finish with 3-43 as RCB managed another clinical win.

Brief scores:

Royal Challengers Bengaluru 241/7 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 92, Rajat Patidar 55; Harshal Patel 3-38, Vidwath Kaverappa 2-36) beat Punjab Kings 181 in 17 overs (Rilee Rossouw 61, Shashank Singh 37; Mohammed Siraj 3-43, Swapnil Singh 2-280 by 60 runs

ALSO READ: Head, Sharma’s Heroics Seal Quick Victory

ALSO READ: DC Triumph RR, Bolsters Playoff Chances