The Gujarat Lions emerged victorious comprehensively by 6 wickets in their away encounter against the Kings XI Punjab. Batting first, the KXIP scored 189/3 in their 20 overs riding on a superb century and half-century from Hashim Amla and Shaun Marsh respectively. Gujarat Lions chased it down with ease courtesy a blazing knock of 74(39) from Dwayne Smith and a couple of breezy knocks from Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik.
Let us now have a look at the performers and the non-performers from the match.
1) Hashim Amla: He is one of the most under-rated T20 players in the world. However, he showed his class today once again as he brought up his second IPL century in style. Moreover, it was also his second ton of the season and also the second century in his whole T20 career. It was a beautiful innings of 104 off 60 deliveries star-studded with 8 fours and 5 sixes and it constituted 55.02% of KXIP’s total of 189/3. Ironically, despite his valiant batting effort, KXIP still ended up on the losing side.
2) Shaun Marsh: His form with the bat has been second best when considered to Amla’s. And he carried it on with a well compiled innings of 58(43) today. Moreover, he stitched a partnership of 125 runs for the second wicket along with Hashim Amla after the early dismissal of Guptill and that propelled Punjab to a superb total of 189/3.
3) Dwayne Smith: He gave Gujarat the perfect start they needed in their chase of 190. Smith started off on a very positive note smashing each and every bowler out of the ground. His innings of 74 runs off 39 balls constituted of 8 fours and 4 huge sixes. He looked all set to score the second century of the match after Hashim Amla but was undone by Glenn Maxwell.
— Cricbuzz (@cricbuzz) May 7, 2017
1) James Faulkner: His torrid time doesn’t seem to end as he returned expensive bowling figures of 4-43-0. He didn’t seem to trouble any of the Punjab batsmen with his slower deliveries and got thrashed all around the ground.
2) Basil Thampi: He has definitely been one of the finds of the tournament but it was definitely not his night as he was taken for 48 runs in his 4 overs. Although, he did pick up the most important wicket of Hashim Amla, the damage had already been done by then.
3) Varun Aaron: He turned out to be very expensive for the Kings XI Punjab as he conceded 43 runs at a run-rate of over 10 in his 4 overs. He never looked like challenging any of the batsmen either with his pace or with his tricks. As a result, the Gujarat Lions batsmen identified him as the weak link in the KXIP bowling unit and hence went after him.