Gayle leads Punjab and Rajasthan beat Banglore
Chris Gayle smashed 63 on his IPL comeback as Kings XI Punjab beat Chennai Super Kings by four runs, despite a stunning unbeaten 79 from MS Dhoni that nearly fired his side to victory. On the day's another match, Sanju Samson smashed 10 sixes in an unbeaten knock of 92 off 45 balls as Rajasthan Royals beat Royal Challengers Banglore by 19 runs in the Indian Premier League.
Set 198 to win, Chennai had seemingly timed their chase poorly when, with six overs remaining, they still required a massive 85 runs to win and Dhoni had only two boundaries and 23 runs to his name. Dhoni was also badly struggling with a back injury, seeing him and his batting partners struggle to run between the wickets.
However, he signalled his six-hitting intent in the 15th over, launching Ravichandran Ashwin for six over deep square-leg. Two consecutive 19-run overs - in which Dhoni was nearly caught at deep midwicket off the first ball and then proceeded to smash 31 of the 38 runs plundered - helped reduced the equation to a gettable 17 runs needed from the final six balls. But - despite Dhoni blasting a fifth six of his spectacular 44-ball innings off the last ball - Mohit Sharma held his nerve, with his wide-bowling tactic to the injured Dhoni doing the trick.
-AA Sports Desk