Mumbai: Liam Livingstone’s allround performance with bat and ball powered Punjab Kings (PBKS) to a 50-run win, handing Chennai Super Kings (CSK) their third defeat of IPL 2022 at Brabourne Stadium here on Sunday.
Livingstone cracked 60 off 32 balls and then bagged two wickets including the very crucial wicket of dangerous Shivam Dube who was batting fluently in the company of “Mister Cool” Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
Debutant Vaibhav Arora (two for 21) was special with the new ball as he swung it both ways. Rahul Chahar chipped in with three wickets, conceding just 25 runs in four overs. Kagiso Rabada, Arshdeep Singh and Odean Smith scalped one wicket each as they reduced Chennai to 36 for five in the eighth over.
Only a miracle could have taken Chennai to victory from there. Dube tried as he crushed 57 off 30 balls, but was removed by Livingstone who completed a special day with a double-strike to seal the win.
This was Chennai’s third consecutive loss in this season, a rather surprising performance for a team who are defending champions.
Chasing 181 runs target, Chennai got off to a disastrous start by losing four wickets within the powerplay. They lost Ruturaj Gaikwad (1) and Robin Uthappa (13) early.
Moeen Ali (0), Ravindra Jadeja (0) and Ambati Rayudu (13) departed in quick succession, leaving Chennai tottering. Dube kept Chennai’s chances alive by scoring quickly and completed his first half-century for Chennai off 26 balls after smashing three sixes and six boundaries.
Chennai pinned their hopes on Dhoni as they needed 91 off the last 36 deliveries. Dwayne Bravo (0) and Dwaine Pretorius (8) fell quickly to Livingstone and Chahar, leaving Dhoni in the lurch. The chase was all over after Dhoni became the ninth batsman to get out after scoring 23 off 28 balls.
Earlier, Livingstone smashed his maiden IPL 50 to power Punjab Kings to 180 for eight. Dropped early on by Ambati Rayudu, the Englishman made great use of the opportunity and swatted five sixes and five boundaries.
Livingstone, who was bought for a whopping Rs 11.5 crore at the IPL auction also hit a massive 108-meter six, the longest recorded in this edition so far.
Punjab came out guns blazing with skipper Mayank Agarwal (4) clobbering a boundary off the very first ball, though he perished in the next ball.
Bhanuka Rajapaksa (9) was run out, leaving Punjab struggling at 14 for two. Despite losing two quick wickets, Livingstone raised the bar with some boundaries to keep the scoreboard ticking, helping Punjab to cross the 100 run mark in the 10th over.
He was involved in a 95-run third wicket stand with opener Shikhar Dhawan (33 off 24). The Englishman left the scene after scoring a scorching 60 off 32 deliveries. Jitesh Sharma (26 off 17), on debut, also displayed his power-hitting skills.
To their credit, Chennai fought back in the death overs and conceded just 38 runs off the last six overs. Leading this effort were Dwaine Pretorius and Chris Jordan who bagged two wickets each, while Mukesh Choudhary, Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo bagged a wicket each.
India Blooms News Service