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AB De Villiers, Umesh Yadav Star As Royal Challengers Bangalore Beat Kings XI Punjab To Keep Playoffs Hope Alive

Navdeep Saini's fabulous penultimate over kept Royal Challengers Bangalore afloat as they beat Kings XI Punjab by 17 runs in an Indian Premier League encounter here Wednesday. AB de Villiers' unbeaten 82 off 44 balls took RCB to a healthy 202 for 4 and things could have gone awry with young Nicholas Pooran (46 off 28 balls) hitting five sixes at the rear before Saini sealed it in the 19th over. Kings XI Punjab finished at 185 for 7 as RCB are now on eight points with three games left. 

Needing 30 off the last two, Saini (2/33), who is one of India's fastest bowlers produced a hostile over in which he removed the dangerous David Miller and Pooran but more importantly gave away only three runs. Saini bowled fast and into the body of the batsmen, who couldn't really get going and his aggression became the defining factor in the end. 

Defending 27 runs off the final over, Umesh Yadav (3/33) was better than the other night against CSK as he got a couple of wickets. With four wins in the last five games, RCB will hope to win the remaining three and expect a few favorable results to make it to the playoffs as rank outsiders. 

Kings XI Punjab started the chase in earnest as KL Rahul (42 off 27 balls) and Chris Gayle (23 off 10 balls) added 42 in less than four overs to set the ball rolling. Mayank Agarwal (35 off 21 balls) continued the flurry of fours during his 59-run stand with Rahul. Rahul and Mayank were out in quick succession before Pooran and David Miller (24) took charge with some lusty hitting added 68 off 8 overs as it boiled down to 30 off the final two overs. 

However, both Saini and Umesh did well to get another two points for the RCB. Earlier, AB de Villiers' scintillating half-century and a 121-run stand with Marcus Stoinis propelled Royal Challengers Bangalore to 202 for four after being put into bat. 

Sent into bat, De Villiers scored a brilliant unbeaten 82 off 44 balls with three fours and seven sixes, while Stoinis hammered 46 off 34 balls with two fours and three sixes. In the last two overs, both Stonis and De Villiers hammered 45 runs off Mohammad Shami and Hardus Viljoen. 

After reaching his 50 off 35 balls, De Villiers, smashed Shami for three sixes, plundering 18 runs in the penultimate over. In the last over, both Stoinis and De Villiers hammered 27 runs off Viljoen, which helped the hosts to race past 200 runs mark. Put into bat, opener Parthiv (43 off 24 balls) and Virat Kohli gave a rollicking start getting 35 runs on board in 18 balls but RCB captain was dismissed by Shami after he was caught by Mandeep Singh at extra cover. 

Parthiv then got into the act for RCB, hitting out of the park Shami for three boundaries and a six in sixth over, who conceded 18 runs in his third over. The left-hander also was severe on Ankit Rajpoot, hitting him for four boundaries and a six. 

The wicket-keeper batsman did not last long as he was caught by Ravichandran Ashwin off Murugan Ashwin after he had smashed seven 4s and two sixes. Looking good at 71 for 2 in 38 balls, RCB lost two quick wickets of Moeen Ali (4) and Akashdeep Nath (3), leaving RCB at the crossroads way 81 for 4. De Villiers brought up the fifty runs partnership for the fifth wicket with Stoinis with a mighty six over deep mid-wicket off Murugan.

BCCI confirms three-team for Women's T20 challenge

The best women cricketers from India and the rest of the world will congregate for a four-match Women's T20 challenge to be played between May 6 and May 11 at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. Three teams - Supernovas, Trailblazers and Velocity - will take on each other in a single round-robin league with the top two teams qualifying for the final on May 11.

The scheduling of the T20 challenge is a follow-up from a one-off exhibition match played in Mumbai last year between the Smriti Mandhana-led Trailblazers and the Harmanpreet Kaur-led Supernovas. Elite T20 stars from the women's circuit including Ellyse Perry, Meg Lanning, Alyssa Healy, Beth Mooney, Suzie Bates, and Sophie Devine partook in that game. This year's expanded tournament is another step towards finding the feasibility of a full-fledged Women's IPL.

The captains and list of available players are still to be confirmed although Mandhana and Harmanpreet are understood to be reprising their roles. All four games will be televised by BCCI's host broadcaster, Star Sports.


May 6 - Supernovas vs Trailblazers

May 8 - Trailblazers vs Velocity

May 9 - Supernovas vs Velocity

May 11 - Final

Mumbai Indians Sign Beuran Hendricks As Replacement For Injured Alzarri Joseph

Mumbai Indians have roped in South Africa left-arm fast bowler Beuran Hendricks as a replacement for Alzarri Joseph, who claimed tournament best figures of 6/12 on his Indian Premier League (IPL) debut on April 6. However, Alzarri Joseph failed to produce an impressive show thereafter. The 22-year-old Antigua-born pacer played just three matches for Mumbai Indians and was smashed for 53 runs in three overs by Rajasthan Royals' batsmen in his last appearance. In the same match, Alzarri Joseph suffered a shoulder injury that forced him out of the IPL 2019.

Joseph was signed as a replacement for New Zealand fast bowler Adam Milne and made a dramatic entry to the cash-rich Indian T20 league.

With an impressive spell against SunRisers Hyderabad, Joseph broke a 12-year-old record for the best bowling figures in the history of IPL.

Hendricks, the Cape Town-born bowler, made his ODI debut earlier this year but got his T20I cap in 2014. In the T20 World Cup in 2014, Hendricks had claimed four wickets in three matches.

In 2014, the 28-year-old left-arm pacer was bought by Kings XI Punjab. Hendricks picked up nine wickets in seven matches for KXIP.

Placed third in the points table, Mumbai Indians have four matches left in the league stage. They have won six matches and lost four so far in the IPL 2019.

MS Dhoni Becomes 1st Indian To Achieve Remarkable IPL Feat After Sensational Knock For CSK vs RCB

MS Dhoni produced one of the most impactful batting performances ever seen in Indian Premier League (IPL) history, single-handedly taking his team to the brink of victory in the RCB vs CSK IPL 2019 clash at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Monday night. While it wasn't enough to get CSK over the line as RCB stuttered to a one-run win, MS Dhoni's knock left a lasting impression on the cricketing fraternity. Not only did MS Dhoni register his highest-ever IPL score, but the CSK captain also became the first Indian to hit 200 sixes in the tournament.

MS Dhoni almost pulled off Chennai's chase of 161 as he smashed five fours and seven sixes in his 48-ball blitz only to see his team lose by one run in IPL 2019 encounter in Bengaluru.

MS Dhoni became only the third player in IPL history to reach the landmark of 200 sixes. Chris Gayle occupies the top spot in the list with a whopping 323 hits over the boundary while RCB star AB de Villiers is second with 204 sixes.

MS Dhoni's seven maximums in the RCB vs CSK IPL clash took his overall tally to 203 sixes in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Rohit Sharma and Suresh Raina are next best Indians, with both batsman boasting of 190 sixes each in the T20 tournament. RCB skipper Virat Kohli is not too far behind with 186 maximums to his name.

On Sunday night, with the defending IPL champions CSK needing 26 off the last over, MS Dhoni hit four and three sixes but missed the final ball from paceman Umesh Yadav and ran to get runs through byes.

Rajasthan Royals Look To Revive Fortunes Against Rampaging Mumbai Indians

Rajasthan Royals (RR) face a race against time to climb out of the bottom two in the Indian Premier League (IPL) Points Table when they host Mumbai Indians (MI) at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium in Jaipur in the first of two IPL 2019 matches to be played on Saturday. MI, who climbed to the second spot with their win against Delhi Capitals on Thursday, have won five of their last six matches, the only defeat having come against Rajasthan Royals. RR's victory in Mumbai last week is only one of two wins recorded by them this season.

RR's dismal record at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium does not make pretty reading for home fans. Apart from their lone victory against Royal Challengers Bangalore, they have lost three matches at home.

England's Jos Buttler has done the bulk of scoring for Rajasthan but the rest of the batsmen have either struggled or not been consistent.

The pace-spin duo of Jofra Archer and Shreyas Gopal has spearheaded their bowling attack but the other bowlers have been far from penetrative and also proved costly in death overs.

Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, have looked formidable this season with a good mix of power hitters, quality bowlers, and perfect all-rounders.

If skipper Rohit Sharma, who completed 8000 runs in T20 last night, and Quinton de Kock laid the foundation at the top, the Pandya brothers -- Hardik and Krunal, along with the big-hitting Kieron Pollard -- have provided the late charge to help MI post huge scores.

They also have two of the best death overs bowlers in Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah. Young leg-spinner Rahul Chahar's three-wicket haul was one of the highlights of MI's win against Delhi.

The match starts at 4 pm IST


Rajasthan Royals: Ajinkya Rahane (capt), Ben Stokes, Joffre Archer, Jos Butler, Ashton Turner, Ish Sodhi, Oshane Thomas, Liam Livingstone, Sanju Samson (wk), Shubham Ranjane, Steve Smith, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, Sudhesan Midhun, Jaydev Unadkat, Prashant Chopra, Mahipal Lomror, Aryaman Birla, Riyan Parag, Dhawal Kulkarni, Krishnappa Gowtham, Varun Aaron, Shashank Singh, Manan Vohra, Rahul Tripathi.

Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (capt), Quinton de Kock (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Krunal Pandya, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Jayant Yadav, Rahul Chahar, Ben Cutting, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuvraj Singh, Anmolpreet Singh, Aditya Tare, Siddhesh Lad, Evin Lewis, Pankaj Jaiswal, Anukul Roy, Mayank Markande, Mitchell McClenaghan, Barinder Sran, Rasikh Salam, Ishan Kishan, Jason Behrendorff.


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