Proving that the game of cricket is one glorious uncertainties, King’s XI , Punjab, inflicted a humiliating six wicket defeat on the reigning champion, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at Mohali on Sunday.
The outcome which can be described as an upset of the first magnitude pushed CSK to the second place enabling Mumbai Indians to reach the top spot on better run rate after beating Kolkata Knight Riders by nine wickets.
Undoubtedly, It was a disappointing end to the champion team which always was in a position of advantage. It looked as though everything was sailing smoothly for CSK when Fau du Plessis and Suresh Raina were cruising along to a 130 -run partnership for the second wicket.
Du Plessis was unlucky to miss his century by four runs when fell to a peach of a yorker delivery by the left arm seamer Curran in the penultimate over. Compelled to gather more runs the CSK batsmen Rayudu and Jadav fell to Mohammad Shami in the last over. Dhoni was the onlooker during this period at the other end.
The total of 170 for five looked good enough for CSK to battle but the bowlers never reckoned for a destroyer like K L Rahul to emerge. In an incredible onslaught Rahul notched up his fifty in less than 20 deliveries overshadowing his more illustrious partner Chris Gayle. The pair gave a glorious start scoring 108 runs in 10.3 overs. Rahul scored 71 runs in 36 balls with seven 4s and five 6s before caught by Tahir off Harbhajan Singh who also dismissed Gayle. Fittingly, Rahul was declared the man of the match.
It did not take much time for the King’s XI to march towards victory but the team led by Tamil Nadu’s Ashwin could finish only 6th on the table. He hailed his team’s win on Sunday but regretted that it could not figure in the Play Offs owing to some poor results in the earlier matches.
M S Dhoni acknowledged that the Punjab team excelled on this Sunday and came off in flying colours on a difficult pitch.
Delhi Capitals and Sunrisers Hyderabad are the other two teams in the top four list.
CSK will take on MI in the first play off tomorrow at the MAC Stadium.