KL Rahul led the Punjab Kings (PBKS) from the front as they pulled off a thrilling win against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by five wickets in Dubai on Friday.
After dominating the run chase for most of the game, Punjab lost the plot in the final over after losing captain KL Rahul. However, with luck on their side, the Kings managed to secure two crucial points. Speaking at the end of the game, Rahul said:
"We are used to this, but I'll take the two points. We played brilliantly and smartly. We realised it was a decent wicket. There wasn't much spin. The bowlers felt we can make the batsmen sideways... I'm really happy that we could get over the line. Obviously, I would want to finish games."
KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal got Punjab Kings off to a flying start in their pursuit of the 166 runs set by the Kolkata Knight Riders. They added 70 runs for the first wicket before Kolkata chipped in with wickets at regular intervals to keep themselves floating.
However, Rahul batted until the last over before Shahrukh Khan won the game courtesy of a lucky escape.
"We know he can hit the ball a long way" - KL Rahul on Shahrukh Khan
The young Tamil Nadu batsman, who played the first game in the second phase of IPL 2021, made an immediate impact, helping his side secure a crucial win. Shahrukh Khan scored 22 off 9 deliveries, including two sixes, to take the Punjab Kings home.
KL Rahul showered praise on Khan, saying that he has been training hard with the batting coaches. He said:
"Shahrukh worked really well with the batting coaches, asking a lot of questions, and developed a game where he can play at 170-180 without taking many risks. We know he can hit the ball a long way. He has done that for Tamil Nadu."
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With 10 points from 12 games in their bag, the Punjab Kings will lock horns with Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Sunday afternoon in Sharjah.