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IPL 2024: Lucknow Super Giants Beat Punjab Kings by 21 Runs in Lucknow

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In IPL Cricket, Lucknow Super Giants defeated Punjab Kings by 21 runs in the 11th match of the league at Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow on Saturday night.

Chasing a target of 200 runs set by Lucknow Super Giants, Punjab Kings made 178 for five in 20 overs. For Punjab Kings, skipper Shikhar Dhawan scored the highest 70 runs followed by Jonny Bairstow with 42 runs. For Lucknow Super Giants, Mayank Yadav scalped three wickets.

Earlier, Lucknow Super Giants won the toss and decided to bat and made 199 for eight. For Lucknow Super Giants, Quinton de Kock was the highest scorer with 54 runs followed by Krunal Pandya with 43 runs. For Punjab Kings, Sam Curran took 3 wickets. Mayank Yadav was declared Player of the match.

Lucknow Super Giants shed their conservatism in style with a fine display of T20 cricket to register their maiden win of IPL 2024. A half-century from Quinton de Kock and quikfire 40s from captain Nicholas Pooran and Krunal Pandya allowed them to score 199 – the joint-highest T20 score at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow. Debutant Mayank Yadav then, touched speeds in excess of 150kph in a fiery spell of middle-overs bowling to clip Punjab Kings, who had threatened a successful chase courtesy a 102-run opening stand between Shikhar Dhawan and Jonny Bairstow.

KL Rahul was gloved-up and partook in pre-match batting drills but didn’t come out to toss. Instead it was left to Nicholas Pooran to explain how the regular captain was going to play as an impact substitute with a view on managing his workload following a recent relapse of his quad troubles.

Interestingly enough, the stand-in captain also opted to bat on a re-laid surface and saw the man he was standing in for make a refreshingly bright beginning with a brief 9-ball 15 that included a six and a four off Arshdeep Singh. At the other end, Quinton de Kock shrugged off indifferent form of his own to take down compatriot Kagiso Rabada for a four and a six before swinging another six off Sam Curran to race away to 28 off 20 in a 54-run PowerPlay for Lucknow.

LSG’s post-PowerPlay period began with two quiet overs of spin with Harpreet Brar once again displaying extraordinary mastery of lengths, even against a left-hander. Rahul Chahar, however, was singled out for attack in his second and third overs with Marcus Stoinis clubbing him for sixes off successive balls – one down the ground and another over deep mid-wicket – before the leggie got a quicker delivery to skid on and through the LSG all-rounder’s attempted encore.

The wicket brought little respite for Chahar as new batter Pooran doled out more punishment on him. In the 12th over, Pooran slogswept a six before drilling a short ball past cover for four and then finding the sight-screen off another fuller length ball in a 20-run over. Chahar conceded 42 off his three overs and wasn’t called on to bowl another over.

Quinton de Kock was dismissed by Arshdeep with the first ball of the 13th over soon after the South African completed a 34-ball half-century. It was a leg cutter bouncer that accounted for de Kock, who mis-hit his attempted pull shot. Pooran, though, was unwilling to let the dismissal of a set batter dim the scoring rate and he proceeded to hit Arshdeep for a pair of fours in the same over. In the next over, the left-hander waltzed down the pitch to the previously unhittable Brar and deposited him beyond the long-on fence. It was at this point, the start of the 16th over, that the returning Rabada produced a crucial breakthrough. Looking to flay a wide length ball, Pooran dragged it back onto his stumps to be dismissed for a 21-ball 42.

Five down at this stage, the dilemma for LSG revolved around whether they needed a batting substitute. But another southpaw, Krunal Pandya, ensured they could hold on to that tactical option for the defence with a terrific blitz that began with a pulled six off Rabada. Pandya plundered 20 runs off Harshal Patel’s 18th over and despite an excellent death-overs performance from Sam Curran (3 for 28), Pandya’s 22-ball 43* helped LSG match the highest T20 score at the venue.

It was game on after the PowerPlay in the second innings when Dhawan and Bairstow combined to add 61. They made 102 in 11.3 overs of the chase before they were separated, triggering a domino effect. Dhawan faced the bulk of the deliveries during the fielding restrictions and using his silken timing, raced away to 41 off 25, 14 off which came courtesy a six and a pair of fours in the sixth over bowled by Mohsin Khan. Bairstow faced only 11 deliveries in this period but kept up with the asking rate, scoring 20.

Bairstow took over after Dhawan got to a 30-ball half-century with a slog-swept six off Ravi Bishnoi. The Englishman targetted cow corner for back-to-back sixes off Krunal Pandya before hitting another boundary in the following over to take Punjab to 98/0 at the half-way point of the chase.

The 21-year-old fast bowler from Delhi conceded 10 off his first over in the IPL but turned heads when the speed gun recorded his third ball at 150 kph. The first ball of the following over was measured at 155 kph and beat a well-set Dhawan’s attempted slash. A similarly pacy delivery – the fourth ball of the second over – brought him his maiden wicket as it cramped Bairstow on his attempted pull and the top-edge was snaffled. Prabhsimran Singh fell to a similar shot in Mayank’s next over but scored 19 off 7 in his brief stay, including a six each off Mayank and Bishnoi.

With Punjab tasked with scoring above 10 runs an over, Jitesh Sharma too took on a pull and miscued it. The pacy and impactful spell (3 for 27) from the debutant meant Dhawan had to chase 60 from the final four with a hobbling Liam Livingstone for company. The Englishman had pulled a hamstring in the fourth over of the first innings and was far from his physical best.

PBKS’ fate was sealed early in the 17th over when Dhawan gloved a short ball down the legside to fall for a 50-ball 70. With the next ball, Sam Curran miscued a pull to mid-on, effectively submitting the match. Livingstone found a string of boundaries in the final over but those strikes only helped to bring down the margin of defeat.

Brief scores: Lucknow Super Giants 199/8 in 20 overs (Quinton de Kock 54, Krunal Pandya 43*, Nicholas Pooran 42; Sam Curran 3-28) beat Punjab Kings 178/5 in 20 overs (Shikhar Dhawan 70, Jonny Bairstow 42; Mayank Yadav 3-27) by 21 runs.

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