IPL 2017 playoffs Qualifier 1

Sandy Mccarthy
May 20, 2017

Rising Pune Supergiant: 78 for 1 (Ajinkya Rahane 34 not out) beat Kings XI Punjab: 73 (Shardul Thakur 3/19, Daniel Christian 2/10, Jaydev Unadkat 2/12) by nine wickets. Courtesy the 9-wicket win, RPS climbed to second position in the eight-team standings, and thereby booked a date with the Mumbai Indians in Qualifier 1 on May 16.

This time is will be hard to repeat the same against Mumbai as 2 of the key player in the Pune squad will be missing as Ben Stokes and Imran Tahir have flown back home.

Rising Pune Supergiant finished above Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL 2017 points table.

With the pitch playing unusually slow, anything over 150 was a tricky target despite Mumbai batting deep. Parthiv, who played the knock of 52 off just 40 balls, kept losing partners at the other end.

He eventually ran out of partners with Pandya brothers too back in the pavilion leaving Mumbai at 101 for six in the 15th over.

Ajinkya Rahane (56) hit three more boundaries to ensure Pune ended the powerplay at 33 for two. Perhaps they feel the T20 format is only for the entertainment bit and about the fours and sixes... MS Dhoni was magnificent, Rahane was good at the start.

Maxwell would be hoping that he, along with the overseas specialists Martin Guptill and Shaun Marsh will continue to wield the long handle and then hope for the all-Indian pace attack, led by the two Sharmas - Sandeep and Mohit - to restrict the opposition batsmen in crunch situations.

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Rahul Tripathi went without scoring when he was cleaned up by the fifth ball of the match from Mitchell McClenaghan and Lasith Malinga struck a huge blow in the next over by getting rid of Steve Smith. Mumbai, who usually excel at chasing, made a mess of it.

A couple of boundaries off McClenaghan got him going, the second being a delightful cover drive.

The visitors now needed the big hits badly to post a fighting total.

The 17-year-old wasn't done though and had Kieron Pollard back in the hut in a dismissal that seemed like a replay of the Rayudu wicket.

Karn, who was picked ahead of Harbhajan Singh for the crucial game, ended up with decent figures of 4 for 30 in four overs. He hit two more sixes to help Rising Pune plunder 41 in the last two overs.

Fifth-placed Punjab are on a roll lately and will be a tough nut to crack for Pune, who are now on 16 points from 13 games with a net run rate of -0.083.

Other reports by BadHub

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