Lucknow’s big win, reached second place in the points table. Cricket

There are occasions when just one glance at the pitch is enough to know that it is a good time to bring out your best T20 game. This is how Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), who were otherwise playing mostly slow turners at home, reacted to the Mohali surface which, for all practical purposes, resembled a runway at the nearby Chandigarh airport.

Lucknow Super Giants’ Marcus Stoinis, left, and Ayush Badoni running between the wickets to score during the Indian Premier League cricket match between Lucknow Super Giants and Punjab Kings in Mohali, India on Friday, April 28, 2023. (AP Photo Surjit Yadav) (AP) )

Following the ideal T20 method – look for boundaries from the first ball, take the anchor out of the equation, don’t slow down in the middle overs, think about the first six – their batsmen battled their way to 257/5, Which Punjab Kings (PBKS) lost by 56 runs on Friday.

In a match where LSG stretched traditional statistical boundaries, they fell just six runs short of the highest total in IPL history – 263 by Royal Challengers Bangalore against Pune Warriors in 2013. The total boundary count of LSG was 41 (27×4, 14×6). , one less than RCB’s record.

KL Rahul knew a thing or two about conditions after leading PBKS a few years ago. Facing trouble for his poor strike rate, he didn’t want to waste time. But after hitting a delightful lofted drive over long-off against Kagiso Rabada, his stay was cut short by a back-of-length delivery from the South African pacer.

Coming into the match, LSG could be tempted to include Quinton de Kock in the tournament. But Kyle Meyers didn’t make that decision easy. West Indies knew exactly what was expected of them and came out firing on all cylinders. After hitting the in-form Arshdeep Singh for four boundaries, he began to twist his arm and hammer the boundary ropes. Taking out Sikandar Raza for some special treatment, he collected 17 runs in the fifth over. Meyers’ 50 was completed off only 20 balls.

Only Rabada’s bouncers were creating some impact. In this way, he sent Meyers back in the sixth over after scoring 54 runs in 24 balls with the help of 7 fours and 4 sixes. But LSG scored 74/2 in the powerplay and there was no looking back.

With the foundation in place, LSG tweaked their batting order, promoting Ayush Badoni and Marcus Stoinis to No.3 and 4, ahead of the struggling Deepak Hooda and Kunal Pandya. Taking advantage of this opportunity with both hands, both shared an 89-run partnership for the third wicket in 47 balls.

LSG scored 128 runs in the last match despite batting their full quota of 20 overs. Here they got as many as in half the time. The ground had spread but the boundary riders kept watching the ball disappear over the ropes. After the dismissal of Badoni 43 (24,3×4,3×6), Stoinis 72 (40b, 6×4,5×6) and Nicholas Pooran 45 (19b, 7×4, 1×6) added 76 runs for the fourth wicket in 30 balls.

LSG looted 126 runs in the middle overs. If anything, they would have preferred to do more damage than the 57 they scored in the last five.

Six of the seven LSG batsmen scored at a strike rate of over 180. Six of the seven PBKS bowlers conceded more than 12 runs per over. Amidst the carnage, leg-spinner Rahul Chahar stood out with figures of 4-0-29-0.

In reply, PBKS could not take a leaf out of LSG’s book and did not shuffle their batting line-up. Young Atharva Tayde’s 66 (36b, 8×4, 2×6) was impressive but in the conditions, he could have served better had their more destructive batsmen not been held back till the 12th over of the run chase, which would have raised the asking rate. Around 13 in the early 18-a-over. LSG kept mixing it up, using the nine bowlers to ensure a big win.

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