Kings XI Punjab win keeps play-off chase alive

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A win today will keep their hopes alive for the playoffs but KXIP will still have to win the next two matches as well - against Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rising Pune Supergiant.

But although Woakes smeared a leg-side six the equation of 20 off the final six balls from Sandeep proved too stiff, Kings XI's superb death bowling keeping them in the hunt. They will look to consolidate their position at the top of the points table to stake a claim at the playoff spot.

Robin Uthappa and Kuldeep Yadav return to the Kolkata playing XI, replacing Sheldon Jackson and Piyush Chawla.

Then Chris Lynn, who diagnosed himself "not 100 per cent fit" before the game, took on the unsafe Punjab spearhead bowler Sandeep Sharma and hit him for three fours in the first over to take the fight to the opposition. KKR, on the other hand, remained second despite the defeat with 16 points from 13 outings.

Another major boost that would have made Coach Jacques Kallis very happy is that fact that KKR no more looks like a team dependent on their spin attack to get wickets or contain opposition run flow.

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Chasing a challenging target of 190 runs, Gujarat romped home with two deliveries to spare.

After Narine's dismissal, it was Chris Lynn alone who took the responsibility of scoring runs and kept on hitting handsome shots all across the ground.

Amid high expectation, Narine picked up at the start of the chase from where he left off against RCB, driving the first two balls of the chase from Shandeep Sharma over the covers for four.

KKR were 82 for 3 at the halfway stage, needing another 89 to win the match.

Gautam Gambhir (8), Robin Uthappa (0) and Manish Pandey (18) all came and went before Lynn was eventually run out two balls into the 18th over.

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After posting 167/6 at the PCA Stadium, Punjab bowlers came to the party keeping Kolkata waiting for their playoffs berth as the hosts put up an authoritative win.

Punjab lost wickets at regular intervals as they failed to stitch any big partnership.

Batting first, Punjab put up a total of 167 with the help of some good work from Glenn Maxwell and Wriddhiman Saha.

Maxwell, Saha and Manan Vohra (25) got the starts but could not convert them into big scores. Narine and Lynn are expected to open the innings today again. What makes things even more hard for KXIP is that their remaining two matches after this one are against Mumbai Indians and Rising Pune Supergiant, both teams that look in ominous form and are among the top three in the League at the moment.

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