Bengaluru, Oct. 26: The Kings XI Punjab bowlers once again put up a solid show as they restricted the Kolkata Knight Riders to 149/9 in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Monday.
After Punjab skipper KL Rahul opted to bowl first, the bowlers rose to the occasion as regular wickets kept the Knights in check.
Barring one strong partnership between KKR captain Eoin Morgan and opener Shubman Gill, the KKR line-up crumbled as they managed to post a below par 149.
After being put into bat, the Knights were reduced to 10/3 in two overs. Glenn Maxwell handed Punjab a good start as he removed the dangerous Nitish Rana on the second ball of the match.
The Knights initially struggled to recover from the early wicket as a lethal Mohammed Shami picked up two wickets in the very next over. Shami first removed Rahul Tripathi (7) and then picked up the wicket of former Knights captain Dinesh Karthik (0).
With the Knights reduced to 10/3 in three overs it looked like a topple was on the cards. But captain Morgan and Gill rebuilt the Kolkata innings as the duo played a blistering partnership to pile the runs on the board.
Morgan led from the front as he along with opener Gill stitched together a 81-run partnership off 47 deliveries. The pair looked lethal as Morgan scored a fiery 40 off 25 and Gill brought up his third half-century of the ongoing edition with a solid 57 off 45.
The young Ravi Bishnoi put the brakes on the duo as he removed a rampaging Morgan. Attempting to go for the maximum, the KKR skipper was picked up by M Ashwin at deep backward square leg.
Once again the ball was in Punjab’s court as they picked up regular wickets to help keep the score low. Lockie Ferguson’s unbeaten 24 off 13 helped the Knights reach 149/9.
Shami led the bowling attack with a three-wicket scalp. Chris Jordan and Ravi Bishnoi chipped in with two wickets each as the Punjab bowlers restricted KKR to a below par total.