Chris Gayle smashed five sixes and scored 53 off 45 balls in his first match of IPL 2020 as Kings XI Punjab beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 8 wickets in Sharjah on Thursday. But it was not so smooth towards the end. Gayle played three dots off Yuzvendra Chahal in the last over and then got run out, leaving 1 run to win off the last ball.
Nicholas Pooran charged down the track and hit a six to bring KXIP back to winning to ways. After the match, Gayle revealed that he wasn’t nervous at all. He said ‘Universe Boss’ had it under control. (IPL 2020 Full Coverage)
“Not really. Come on man, it is the Universe Boss batting, how can I be nervous. I might give you a heart attack, I thought I had it in the bag but stranger things have happened in cricket,” Gayle said after KXIP’s 8 wicket win.
Gayle had to sit out for the first 7 games of this season as Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul were going all guns blazing at the top of the order and when the KXIP management did feel the need to conclude Gayle in the XI, he had to be hospitalized with food poisoning.
“I can get out of the bubble now and go. It was very sticky and I thought it was better in the second innings, it was difficult for the team batting first and we got the better part of the pitch. The team asked me to do a job and I deliver, openers have been batting well and we didn’t want to trouble that, Mayank and the captain have given us some good starts right through, the win was more important for the team. I thought it was important to keep fit, I don’t like being on the bench but I was enjoying it and apart from the sickness I have been getting fitter,” Gayle said.
Gayle also added that he might make himself available for the 2021 edition of IPL after his half-century against RCB.
“It was a good innings, first in IPL and now I can make myself available for 2021,” Gayle said.
Chasing 172 in a must-win game, the in-form opening pair of Rahul (61 not off 49) and Mayank Agarwal (45 off 25) got off to a flying start before Gayle (53 off 45) joined his skipper in the middle. Batting first, skipper Virat Kohli top-scored with 48 off 39 balls in his 200th game for RCB before Chris Morris’ 25 off 8 in the death overs took the team to 171 for six.