Rajashtan Royals batsman Ajinkya Rahane smashed a century to lead his team to a 59-run win over the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League on Sunday, while Kings XI Punjab beat the Kolkata Knight Riders by two runs in a thriller.
Rahane hammered six boundaries off left-arm seamer Sreenath Arvind’s one over to remain 103 not out off 60 balls, hitting in total 12 fours and five sixes in Rajasthan’s imposing score of 195-2.
Bangalore lost Chris Gayle cheaply early before being bowled out for 136 in 19.5 overs.
Medium-fast bowler Siddharth Trivedi clean bowled four Bangalore batsmen for 25 runs, including the key wickets of Virat Kohli and A.B. de Villiers.
England batsman Owais Shah hit 60 off 26 balls with five fours and five sixes to share a stand of 121 with Rahane off just 50 balls.
The win propelled Rajasthan to the top of the table, with six points from three wins and two defeats. Royal Challengers have one win from four matches.
Leg-spinner Piyush Chawla starred with three crucial wickets for 18 runs as Kings XI Punjab successfully defended their total of 134-9.
Chawla ran through the middle order with three quick wickets to help restrict Kolkata to 132-7 after West Indies off-spinner Sunil Narine’s tidy figures of 5-19 had restricted Kings XI.
Kings XI needed nine off the last over, but medium-fast bowler Harmeet Singh varied his pace intelligently to clean bowl Ryan ten Doeschate.
Debabrata Das, who top-scored for his team with 35, managed a single off the last delivery when a boundary was required, but it was Chawla’s triple blow midway through Kolkata’s run chase that hurt the home team most at Eden Gardens. The leg-spinner clean bowled Manvinder Bisla (27) and Yousuf Pathan for a duck in one over, before neatly taking a skied ball off Shakib Al Hasan’s (4) mistimed sweep shot with Kolkata slipping to 88-6 by the 15th over after looking comfortable at 73-2 in the 12th over.
Earlier, King XI’s Mandeep Singh made 38 off 34 balls and teammate David Hussey scored 32 after Narine got the top two wickets of Adam Gilchrist (5) and Shaun Marsh (1) in the space of three deliveries.
The off-spinner bagged three more wickets within six balls in his return spell of two overs, but Kings XI managed to score 30 off the last two overs, with Bhargav Bhatt hoisting Narine for a six over long-on off the last delivery of the innings.
Both teams have four points after winning two matches each.