Hardly any time for Punjab to recover after horror show
The 10-wicket thrashing handed out to Kings XI Punjab by Royal Challengers Bangalore on Tuesday has come as a hammer-blow for Ravichandran Ashwin’s men.
A third consecutive defeat for franchise has caused a lot of damage. At one point, it looked like the Kings XI would sail into the playoffs after their strong first-half but Tuesday’s defeat has thrown the side into a five-way race for the last two play-off spots in the IPL.
Punjab’s net-run rate took the bigger hit, which has seen the side slide down to fifth position in the IPL. This means the side need to win both their remaining matches.
That defeat will be music to the ears of their opponents on Wednesday at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. Defending champions Mumbai Indians’ resurgence was brought to a halt by the Rajasthan Royals but a good run rate keeps them well in the hunt.
Kings XI batting woes
All throughout the IPL, the Punjab franchise has been riding on the wave of KL Rahul’s excellent form with the bat. The opener’s showing along with some handy contributions from Chris Gayle have
masked the non-show from the rest of the batsmen in the line-up including Karun Nair, Aaron Finch and Mayank Agarwal.
This soft underbelly was exposed by Royal Challengers Bangalore when Rahul and Gayle fell early on Sunday as the side was bundled out for just 88. This chink in the armour will be definitely be targeted by their opponents on Wednesday.
Pressure on Rohit
Rohit Sharma has shown both the good and the bad, mostly the latter, in this year’s IPL. The Mumbai skipper has been dismissed for a golden duck three times this season and bar two knocks of 94 and 56 against Royal Challengers and Kings XI respectively, the India ODI vice-captain has flattered to deceive. The latest of his ducks came in the side’s defeat to Rajasthan Royals and seeing his performances in the last few matches, the skipper is definitely due a big one on Wednesday.
All eyes on him: Punjab’s KL Rahul.