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1.5 overs (0 Run)
No run, the batsman shoulders arms to let that one through.
Dinesh Karthik is the new man in.
1.4 overs (0 Run)
OUT! EDGED AND TAKEN! Shami now has one and Kolkata are in deep trouble here. This is a superb delivery. Perfect Test match length. It is on off and shapes away. Tripathi looks to defend but the ball kisses the outside edge and goes to the keeper. Rahul makes no mistake. Punjab are elated.
1.3 overs (1 Run)
Brilliant from Maxwell! He looks up for this one. It is on a length and around off, it is pushed towards wide mid off. Maxwell runs there, dives to his left and stops it.
1.2 overs (0 Run)
Gets this one to jag back in from middle. The length is a touch shorter. Gill looks to flick but misses to get hit high on the pads.
1.1 overs (0 Run)
Length and outside off, it shapes away. Left alone. Good start by Shami.
Will it be pace from the other end? Yes. Here’s Mohammed Shami.
0.6 over (0 Run)
A dot to end! This is fired on middle, Tripathi guides it to point. End of an action-packed over. 9 runs and a wicket from it.
0.5 over (6 Runs)
SIX! That is right off the middle! One sighter is all what Tripathi needed. He goes down on one knee and slog sweeps this over the mid-wicket fence for a biggie. First biggie of the game. It was with the turn. Excellent from Tripathi.
0.4 over (1 Run)
One more single! This is on middle, it is eased down to long on for one.
0.3 over (1 Run)
Tripathi is off the mark! He works it through mid-wicket with the turn for one.
Who will walk out at no. 3? Rahul Tripathi it is.
0.2 over (0 Run)
OUT! TAKEN! Rana, the man for Kolkata in the last game, has gone for a golden duck. Maxwell has struck in the first over. It is not such a great delivery. It is flatter and down the leg side. Rana looks to sweep but there is a little extra bounce. It goes off the top edge and straight into the hands of the fielder at short fine leg. Gayle makes no mistake. Perfect start for Punjab.
0.1 over (1 Run)
Kolkata and Gill are underway! It is on the pads, it is worked through square leg for one.
Right! Done with the pre-game formalities and it is time for the action. Both the umpires stride out to the middle. KL Rahul has got his men in a huddle and he is sharing words of wisdom with them before they take their positions on the field. Shubhman Gill and Nitish Rana are the openers for Kolkata. Punjab will begin with spin as Glenn Maxwell will bowl the first over for them. Here we go…
Kolkata (Unchanged Playing XI) – Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Dinesh Karthik (WK), Eoin Morgan (C), Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy.
Punjab (Unchanged Playing XI) – KL Rahul (WK/C), Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh.
Kolkata skipper, Eoin Morgan, says that they wanted to bowl first as well, knowing that dew might come in. Says that they want to play the way they did against Delhi. Tells that Russell is still not available and they are unchanged as well.
Punjab skipper, KL Rahul says that they want to know a total and chase it down. States they have seen dew and it favors them in the second innings. Mentions winning gives them a lot of confidence and a lot of players want to now play better and better and the mood in the camp is really good. Further adds everybody has done a fantastic job and even the support staff has done really well so far and they are a big part of them doing well at the moment. Informs that they are playing the same team that played the last game.
TOSS – It is time for the spin of the coin. Up it goes and it lands in KL Rahul’s favor. PUNJAB WILL BOWL FIRST.
Pitch report – Simon Doull is in for the pitch report with Kumar Sangakkara. Doull feels that the wicket has not changed in over 30 years. Sangakkara feels that the wicket has got slower and the team which will bat first will struggle to figure out the par score. Adds that the side winning the toss will look to chase. Simon feels that dew might come in during the second innings and batting then will be easier. Sangakkara feels the slower balls will be crucial and also the back of a length deliveries too will be hard to hit.
Kolkata, on the other hand, are coming off a morale-boosting win against Delhi. The thing that would have pleased them the most is the performance of Nitish Rana and Sunil Narine. Kolkata would want that they continue their performance and get their 7th win of the tournament and move one step closer to the playoffs. An interesting match coming up.
Hello all! Two teams fighting for the fourth spot in the playoffs go up against each other in Sharjah. Both teams are coming off a win in their previous game and are looking strong. Punjab though are on a resurgence as they have won 4 on the trot and have turned things around in a spectacular fashion. Their last win against Hyderabad would have boosted their confidence further.
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