Rahul assault flattens Delhi

Rahul assault flattens Delhi

Opener slams fastest IPL 50 off 14 balls to power KingsXI home

Rahul assault flattens Delhi

Opener KL Rahul blasted his way to a fastest ever half-century in Indian Premier League as a new-look Kings XI Punjab started their campaign on a resounding note, defeating Delhi Daredevils by six wickets, here on Sunday.

R Ashwin marshalled his resources admirably restricting Daredevils to a modest 166 for 7 on a placid track.

The KXIP captain himself bowled a few leg-breaks during his disciplined effort of 1 for 23 in 4 overs. The surprise package was Afghanistan off-spinner Mujeeb-ur Rahman, who finished with 2/28 in 4 overs.

Courtesy Rahul, who smashed six boundaries and four sixes in his 16-ball-51, the match as a contest was over within the Powerplay as KXIP raced away to 73 for 2 in six overs.

Karun Nair, who has had a mixed season, then helped himself to a 33-ball-50 as the home team reached the target in 18.5 overs.

Only Yuvraj Singh's 12 off 22 balls stuck out like a sore thumb as he once again looked a pale shadow of his old self.

The star of the match certainly was Rahul, who started with a top-edged six and a couple of boundaries off Trent Boult.

He also smacked Mohammed Shami over fine-leg for a six in the next over. By the time Amit Mishra was introduced in the third over, he was in a murderous mood.

He hit Mishra for three fours and two sixes as the 24 runs in that over brought up the fastest ever 50 in 11 editions of IPL.

Rahul was out trying to play a lap shot but the pressure was off Kings XI's back by then as Nair also made merry hitting five fours and two sixes. The sixes -- one was hit over long-off and other was a slog sweep over fine-leg.

"For years, I have been branded a Test cricketer. It's good for me to be up there, creating history and breaking records. Hope to continue this way," Rahul said after being adjudged Player of the Match.

Gambhir's decision to play Mishra can certainly be questioned as the bowler didn't look fully fit and has played very little domestic cricket this season. During training sessions, he was very rusty as the 46 runs in 4 overs would indicate.




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