IPL 2018: Chris Gayle Hails 'King' KL Rahul After Match-Winning Knock

Published - 07 May 2018, 11:14 AM | Updated - 07 May 2018, 09:13 PM

On Saturday (May 5), KL Rahul posted a photo on Twitter, calling his Kings XI Punjab teammate ‘Kings’ of good times.

Well, the Jamaican did not waste much time in returning the favour and chose a brilliant occasion for the same. Gayle, the most decorated batsman in the history of T20s, lavished praise on his teammate after the latter played a stunning knock to take Kings XI home against Rajasthan Royals on Sunday (May 6).

With wickets falling from one end, Rahul showed fine temperament and maturity to take his side over the line. Unlike the previous games where he threw away his wicket after getting the start, Rahul stayed till the end.

Chasing a modest 153, Kings XI were in a spot of bother after being reduced to 29 for 2.  Rahul and Karun Nair then steadied the ship with a 50-plus stand before the Royals put them under pressure again. The Royals dismissed Nair and Axar Patel in quick succession to reduce the Kings XI to 87 for 4 from 79 for 2. Those wickets  forced Rahul to drop anchors. The hard-hitting batsman, who had started the season with a 14-ball fifty, took 44 balls to complete his fifty.

Credits: BCCI

However, he did not face any problem when the situation demanded him to shift gears. The turning point of the game came in the 17th over when he hit Jofra Archer for 16 runs before Jaydev Unadkat conceded 15 runs as Kings XI all but sealed the game. The Punjab-based outfit eventually reached home in the the 19th over. Rahul remained unbeaten on 84 off 34 balls.

Earlier in the game, Mujeeb Ur Rahman’s sensational bowling had helped Kings XI restrict the Royals to a modest 152 for 9. At 84 for 2, the Royals were looking on their way to post big. However, once Andrew Tye castled Sanju Samson, it opened the floodgates. From 84 for 2, Royals found themselves 100 for 4 and later 114 for 7. Mujeeb was the destructor-in-chief, dismissing Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer to derail Royals’ innings. Shreyas Gopal’s 24-run cameo then helped Royals put up a respectable total.

Mujeeb took 3 wickets (Credits: BCCI)

As soon as the game ended, Gayle took to Twitter to hail Rahul, tweeting:

“King @klrahul11 #Champion #Kings ????”