Punjab Kings have faltered in the chase yet again. In a chase of 186, the openers KL Rahul(49) and Mayank Agarwal(67) set the game up beautifully with a 120-run opening partnership in 11.5 overs.
Everyone thought the Punjab Kings would gallop their way to victory from there. But Mustafizur Rehman and Kartik Tyagi bowled exceptionally well in the last overs and defended eight runs in the last 12 deliveries. Tyagi especially produced an over for ages as he gave away just one run and won the game for his side single-handedly.
Cricket fans and critics were shocked to see the end result and took to Twitter to slam the Punjab Kings batsman for choking and losing a game in such fashion. They also heaped praise on Kartik Tyagi for his stupendous efforts in the final over of the match. A section of fans trolled former Indian batsman Gautam Gambhir as he earlier predicted that Punjab Kings would win the match easily.
Here are some of the best reactions after Punjab's shock defeat against Rajasthan Royals:
After such a demoralizing defeat, Punjab Kings skipper KL Rahul has not lost hope yet. Speaking at the post-match conference, KL Rahul is still hopeful of making a comeback and winning their remaining games in the tournament to have a chance to reach the IPL playoffs.
Rahul admitted that the loss against Rajasthan was difficult to swallow and felt that they did not learn from their previous mistakes. Regarding the match and road ahead, KL Rahul said:
"It’s a tough one to swallow. We have been a team that has experienced games like these before. We need to see how we can handle pressure better. Trying to finish in the 18th over, sometimes you go too hard and lose your way and let the opponents in. Tough one to swallow that you haven’t learnt from your previous mistakes."
“We will now try to come back stronger and win the next five games. We pulled things back quite nicely with the ball, kept taking wickets, which is very crucial in this format. We bowled decent lengths in the powerplay. Getting runs for me, Mayank, and even Aiden in his first IPL game was important."
Punjab Kings now find themselves in a must-win situation as they cannot afford a loss from here. The onus will be on Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul again as their middle-order seems very brittle.
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