The Punjab Kings (PBKS) bounced back in style in the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 after registering a victory against Gujarat Titans (GT) by 8 wickets on Tuesday at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.
Punjab Kings successfully chased the target with four overs to spare after Kagiso Rabada’s impressive four-wicket haul was followed by Shikhar Dhawan’s brisk half-century and Liam Livingstone’s explosive finish with the bat.
Chasing 144, PBKS lost Jonny Bairstow early after the opener was caught by Pradeep Sangwan off Mohammad Shami’s bowling.
The pressure of an early wicket didn’t affect Shikhar Dhawan at the other end as the left-handed batter smacked three fours as well as a ramp shot for a maximum.
Dhawan added two fours and PBKS were 43-1 at the end of the powerplay. Bhanuka Rajapaksa supported the opener with two consecutive fours.
The fifty partnership was up for the second wicket as Dhawan and Rajapaksa kept the runs ticking. PBKS were 76-1 at the halfway mark.
Dhawan notched his half-century in the next over with a four. Rajapaksa at the other end hammered a six but was dismissed on the very next ball after the left-handed batter was trapped LBW.
Dhawan was joined by Liam Livingstone as the asking rate was below 6 for the Punjab Kings, with five overs to go.
Livingstone smoked three sixes in a row followed by two fours against Shami in the 16th over, which produced 30 runs as PBKS surpassed the target with four overs to spare.
Earlier, Gujarat Titans, who opted to bat first, remained unchanged from their previous victory.
A direct hit from Rishi Dhawan provided PBKS a head start as Shubman Gill fell short of the crease.
Wriddhiman Saha looked in sublime form after three cracking shots for four followed by a maximum. However, the wicketkeeper batter was caught by Mayank Agarwal off Rabada’s bowling.
Skipper Hardik Pandya and Sai Sudharsan were out in the middle and GT were 42-2 at the end of the powerplay. Rishi Dhawan claimed the crucial wicket of Hardik Pandya, who was caught behind in the 7th over.
GT were 62-3 at the halfway mark as Sai Sudharsan was joined by David Miller. GT were in further trouble after Livingstone dismissed Miller as the left-handed batter was caught at long-off.
Sudharsan creamed three fours and was joined by Rahul Tewatia. GT were 98-4 with five overs to go.
Rabada claimed two wickets on consecutive deliveries to dismiss Tewatia and Rashid Khan in the 17th over.
Sudharsan reached his maiden IPL fifty but GT lost two more wickets. While Arshdeep Singh rattled the stumps of Pradeep Sangwan, Lockie Ferguson holed out to the deep as Rabada picked his fourth of the innings.
GT reached 143/8 after the final over produced 11 runs as Sudharsan remained unbeaten on 64*.
Brief Scores: Punjab Kings 145/2 (Shikhar Dhawan 62*, Bhanuka Rajapaksa 40; Lockie Ferguson 1-29) beat Gujarat Titans 143/8 (Sai Sudharsan 64*, Wriddhiman Saha 21; Kagiso Rabada 4-33) by 8 wickets.