Mayank had the best position to watch Rahul's knock.
Mayank had the best position to watch Rahul’s knock.

After setting up the game by two exceptional spells from the captain Ravichandran Ashwin and Mujeeb Zadran, the Kings XI Punjab chasing the modest-looking 167 against the Delhi Daredevils needed someone to make an early statement with the bat and boy did KL Rahul made one yesterday. He blasted the Delhi bowling away in the powerplay and took the game away from the northern rivals right there.

KL notched up the fastest ever 50 in the IPL history at the time and became the other outstanding performance for Kings XI on the day and they subsequently went on to win their opening encounter by 6 wickets. KL was eventually dismissed for 51 off just 16 balls at an excellent strike rate of 318.75

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Batting alongside Rahul was his Karnataka and now Kings XI teammate, Mayank Aggarwal had the best seat in the house to see the amazing knock. Talking about the same chase, Aggarwal said, “The pitch was a bit slow and turning a bit for both the side. To be honest the start we got eased up a lot of things. We knew DD was under the pump and chasing the game,”

He showered praise on Rahul for his terrific innings and said, “It was tremendous the way he was batting and striking the ball. I think, he was in the zone. It was amazing to see such good hitting and cricketing strokes from the other end.”

His other Karnataka teammate Karun Nair too did really well for Kings XI in this chase too. Karun got a 32 ball 50 and never allowed Delhi to come back in the game. Talking about the importance of the knock for Karun, Aggarwal said, “It was a very important knock by Karun. He anchored the innings and chances he took were calculative. The plan is to be positive and go out with an aggressive mindset and take whatever comes from there,”

By Kashish Chadha