IPL: Gayle, Stoinis lift Punjab to 174/6 vs Mumbai

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Indore, May 4 (IANS) A half-century by Chris Gayle followed by some fireworks by Marcus Stoinis in the final moments helped Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) post a challenging 174/6 against Mumbai Indians in an Indian Premier League (IPL) clash at the Holkar Cricket Stadium here on Friday.

Punjab somewhat squandered a great 54-run start by openers Lokesh Rahul (24 off 20) and Gayle (50 off 40 balls), before picking pace towards the end as Stoinis deposited Hardik Pandya for two sixes and as many fours to milk 22 runs off the final over.

The self-proclaimed ‘Universe Boss’ slammed his 24th IPL fifty, decorated with six boundaries and couple of sixes.

Put in to bat, Punjab were off to a decent beginning as the openers took Punjab past the 50-run mark in 6.1 overs.

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Mumbai’s find of the tournament Mayank Markande came up with the first breakthrough after dismissing Rahul in the seventh over with the scoreboard reading 54 runs.

Gayle was then joined by veteran Yuvraj Singh and the duo stitched a 34-run partnership for the second wicket before pacer Ben Cutting ended the Caribbean southpaw’s innings in the 12th over.

Yuvraj (14 off 14 balls), who was promoted up the batting order, once again failed to fire as the out-of-form batsman was the next to depart in the 13th over with Punjab’s scorecard reading 96/3.

Karun Nair and Axar Patel then showed some resistance, adding 36 runs for the fourth wicket.

Pacers Jaspreet Bumrah and Mitchell McClenaghan further jolted the hosts after dismissing Nair (23 off 12 balls) and Patel (13 off 12 balls) in the 16th and 17th over respectively.

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Stoinis then played a cameo of a 15-ball 29 while Mayank Agarwal chipped in with 11 runs down the order to help Punjab reach a healthy score.

For Mumbai, McClenaghan, Bumrah, Hardik, Markande and Cutting bagged a wicket each.

Brief Scores: Kings XI Punjab 174/6 (Chris Gayle 50, Marcus Stoinis 29; Jasprit Bumrah 1/19) vs Mumbai Indians.

–IANS

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