Punjab Kings provided yet another jolt to defending champions Chennai Super Kings by defeating the latter with 11-runs on April 25 at iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Shikhar Dhawan's blistering 88* and incredible bowling left CSK clueless in a high-scoring game on Monday evening. Ambati Rayudu brought the game close for defending champions as he played a scintillating knock of 78-runs in just 39 balls with the help of six maximums and seven boundaries.
After being invited to bat first, Punjab Kings got off to a decent start as the openers added 37-runs on board for the first before Mayank Agarwal got dismissed by M Theekshana, but later Shikhar Dhawan, who was playing his 200th Test match along with Bhanuka Rajapaksa (42 off 32) rescued their side. Both the batters had a crucial 110-run stand for the second wicket and took the team to a defendable total. Liam Livingstone, too, made a valuable cameo at the end with his quickfire 19 in just seven balls.
In response to 187, Chennai never looked in rhythm except when Ambati Rayudu played shots all around the park. Kagiso Rabada and Rishi Dhawan picked two wickets, and Arshdeep Singh starred with his economical bowling in the death over; he returned with one wicket. Let's take a look at some of the highlights from the game.
110-run stand between Shikhar Dhawan and Banuka Rajapaksa
After Punjab suffered their first blow in Mayank Agarwal's dismissal, Sri Lankan batter Banuka Rajapaksa got the opportunity to come on the crease after waiting for a couple of matches. He grabbed the opportunity with both hands as he built a crucial partnership with senior pro-Shikhar Dhawan. Together they had a 110-run stand and helped their side to post enough total to defend in front of a quality batting side. Rajapaksa added 42 runs in 32 balls, while Dhawan made blistering 88-runs in just 59 balls.
Ambati Rayudu's valiant 78
After Chennai was on the verge of another loss, experienced Rayudu played a vital knock of 78 runs to keep the four-time champions in the game. He hit six maximums and seven boundaries in the second innings; his strike rate was 200 in the game. He made the run chase look easy but could not finish things for his side as Kagiso Rabadda bowled him in the 18th over.
Incredible bowling from Punjab bowlers
Punjab needed such effort to stop the experienced and quality batting lineup of Chennai Super Kings. Sandeep Sharma and Rishi Dhawan were given a chance in the squad after the forgettable previous outing, and both the players were right on their money. Sharma provided an early breakthrough to his side by dismissing Robin Uthappa (1 off 7), and later others too joined the party. Veteran Rishi Dhawan clinched two crucial wickets in the game in the form of Shivam Dube and dangerous-looking MS Dhoni.
However, Arshadeep Singh, was the star bowler for the side as he bowled with an impressive economy and conceded just 23-runs in four overs. In the most crucial 19th over, he just conceded 8-runs and left CSK with a mounting target to chase in the last around.