Dubai: KL Rahul saved his best for the last as his unbeaten 98 off 42 balls, which for a change was full on intent quotient, helping Punjab Kings crush Chennai Super Kings by six wickets in an inconsequential IPL encounter on Thursday.
Chasing 135 for victory, the Punjab team stormed to victory in 13 overs as the CSK skipper M S Dhoni could not find answers to stop Rahul's onslaught.
Skipper Rahul was on the attack from the word go, launching into the CSK bowlers. The stylish right-hander clobbered eight sixes to go with seven boundaries. He finished it in style with a big six off Shardul Thakur.
The Punjab skipper had been panned for his approach in some of the earlier matches where he dragged the game deep but Punjab Kings failed to finish on the winning side. Rahul's strike-rate had been panned often during this edition and finally the flair was back in his batting.
Alas, it came when the horse has bolted the door.
Thakur picked three wickets for 28 runs in three to be CSK's best bowler on a day when the other bowlers including Deepak Chahar (1/48 from 4 overs), Josh Hazlewood (0 for 22 in 3 overs) and Dwayne Bravo (0/32 in 2 overs) looked clueless in the face of Rahul's stylish onslaught.
CSK: 134-6 CSK (Faf du Plessis 76; Ravi Bishnoi 1-25, Arshdeep Singh 2-35, Chris Jordan 2-20) lost to Punjab Kings 139-4 in 13 overs (K L Rahul 98 not out; Shardul Thakur 3/28) by six wickets
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