IPL 2022: Jadeja laments poor start after Chennai loss to Punjab – News

The Punjab Kings survived a late blitz from Ambati Rayudu to seal an 11-point victory

Shikhar Dhawan of Punjab Kings plays a shot. (PTI)


Published: Tue, 26 Apr 2022, 12:10 AM

Shikhar Dhawan batted an unbeaten 88 for the Punjab Kings who held off a batting blitz from Chennai Super Kings’ Ambati Rayudu to seal an 11-point victory in a hard-fought IPL match on Monday.

Dhawan, playing his 200th game in the Indian Premier League, beat nine fours and two sixes in his 59-ball run to guide Punjab, who were batted first at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium, 187-4.

Holders Chennai slipped to 40-3 but Rayudu took the chase in his 78-ball 39, studded with six sixes before being knocked down by Kagiso Rabada.

Rayudu hit three straight sixes and a four against Sandeep Sharma to raise hopes of a win in a 23-point 16th.

Skipper MS Dhoni tried to repeat his pyrotechnics from the previous game when he scored 16 from the last four balls but this time 27 runs from 20th proved too big as Chennai closed 11 courts.

“I think he (Rayudu) was batting brilliantly but we could have limited them to less than 170-175,” Chennai skipper Ravindra Jadeja said.

“I think not getting off to a good start in the top six (overs) we don’t put points on the board in the top six. So we have to improve and come back strong.

Mid-pace Rishi Dhawan, wearing an unusual mask to protect his face in the event of being hit by the ball, kept his composure in the final to have Dhoni caught at midwicket by Jonny Bairstow.

Punjab rebounded from two consecutive defeats while four-time champions Chennai fell to their sixth defeat in eight matches.

Earlier, Dhawan lost opener and skipper Mayank Agarwal for 18 after a slow start before adding 110 for the second wicket with fellow southpaw Bhanuka Rajapaksa making it 42.

Sri Lankan Rajapaksa survived two lost one-and-five chances and finished with two fours and two sixes in his 32-ball shot.

Dhawan put his uneven IPL form behind him, turning up the heat by crushing Mukesh Choudhary for three limits in one. Shortly after, he swept Dwaine Pretorius for another boundary to raise his 46th IPL by half a century and second of the season.

“I felt the wicket was stopping a bit, so I gave myself some time before going for some big shots,” Dhawan said.

“I kept my cool knowing that I could also score big points later. Once I’m ready, I also have a lot of limitations. I know my strength, so that’s what I bet on and it worked my way.

England’s Liam Livingstone joined Dhawan in maintaining the charge as the most expensive overseas buy in this IPL auction – Punjab picked it up for $1.52m – hit Pretorius for two four and two sixes in another big over.

He fell in the next to Choudhary, but his seven-ball 19 amplified what turned out to be a total winner.

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