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De Kock's blistering 81 helps LSG post 181/5

De Kock's blistering 81 helps LSG post 181/5

Bengaluru, Apr 2 (UNI) Opener Quinton de Kock's explosive 81 off just 56 balls and crucial partnerships, including a 53-run opening stand with skipper KL Rahul and a 56-run partnership with Marcus Stoinis for the third wicket, helped Lucknow Super Giants post a competitive total after RCB skipper Faf du Plessis won the toss and elected to field first here on Wednesday.
Despite the aggressive start from De Kock and partnerships built by Lucknow Super Giants, Royal Challengers Bengaluru managed to stage a comeback towards the end of the innings.
They bowled some economical overs, limiting the scoring opportunities for the opposition. However, Nicholas Pooran's late onslaught proved crucial for Lucknow Super Giants as he smashed five sixes in the last two overs, scoring an unbeaten 40 off just 21 deliveries.
This late surge helped Lucknow Super Giants post a defendable total.
Among the RCB bowlers, Glenn Maxwell stood out with figures of 2-23 off his four overs, contributing significantly to their effort to contain the opposition.
Lucknow Super Giants had a promising start to their innings, thanks to a solid opening partnership between De Kock and Rahul, who accumulated 53 runs together for the first wicket.
De Kock, in particular, made an explosive start to the innings by scoring 32 runs in the initial phase of the partnership. His aggressive batting included three boundaries off Reece Topley, who was brought into the side in place of Alzarri Joseph.
De Kock's boundaries consisted of a top-edge, a lofted shot over cover-point, and a punch to the deep backward point fence, setting a brisk pace for LSG's innings.
In the second over of the innings, De Kock, drove a delivery from Yash Dayal to the deep-point boundary for four runs. Following this, he smashed back-to-back sixes off Mohammed Siraj, executing a superb pick-up shot off his pads that soared into the first tier, followed by a powerful blast over deep backward square leg.
Meanwhile, Rahul showcased his batting prowess by hitting Yash Dayal for a huge six, a delightful shot off a fullish delivery that he dispatched over the bowler's head. He then struck Glenn Maxwell for another six, although Rajat Patidar managed to get a hand to it.
Unfortunately, Rahul's aggressive innings came to an end as he mistimed the next delivery, resulting in a catch for Mayank Dagar, and he departed after scoring 20 runs.
Despite a dropped chance earlier, De Kock found a reliable partner in Marcus Stoinis, and together they built a solid third-wicket partnership, adding 56 runs to the scoreboard. De Kock reached his half-century off 36 balls, smashing five boundaries and three maximums along the way.
Lucknow Super Giants reached the 100-run mark in the 12th over, and soon after, they reached their fifty-run partnership in just 26 balls.
In the 13th over, De Kock and Stoinis punished Cameron Green, scoring 19 runs off his bowling. De Kock hit him for a six and a four, while Stoinis dispatched him over deep square leg for another six off a full toss.
However, Stoinis's innings came to an end as he was caught by Dagar off the bowling of Glenn Maxwell, departing after contributing 23 runs off 15 balls, including one four and two sixes.
In the 15th over, the hosts applied the brakes on Lucknow Super Giants with Yash Dayal bowling a tight over, conceding only two runs. However, in the following over, De Kock struck two boundaries off Mohammed Siraj to regain momentum for LSG, as they reached 141/3 after 16 overs.
With four overs remaining and LSG aiming to accelerate towards a total of 200, Nicholas Pooran was given a lifeline when keeper Anuj Rawat dropped a catch off Reece Topley's bowling. However, de Kock wasn't as fortunate as he attempted to go big off a low and slow full-toss from Topley, resulting in a well-judged catch by Mayank Dagar at long-off. De Kock departed after a splendid innings of 81 runs off 56 balls, including eight boundaries and five maximums.
Topley's over proved crucial as he conceded only two runs while claiming the key wicket of de Kock, with LSG managing to score only 19 runs off 28 balls by the end of the 18th over.
In the penultimate over, Nicholas Pooran unleashed a barrage of sixes off Topley, hitting three consecutive sixes, including a massive 106-meter shot that landed on the stadium roof. This onslaught cost RCB 20 runs for the over.
Pooran continued his assault in the final over, smashing two more consecutive sixes off Mohammed Siraj, as LSG eventually posted a total of 181/5 in their 20 overs, courtesy of Pooran's blitzkrieg in the last two overs.
Brief scores:
Lucknow Super Giants 181/5 in 20 overs (Quinton de Kock 81, Nicholas Pooran 40 not out; Glenn Maxwell 2-23) against Royal Challengers Bengaluru.
UNI BDN AKS

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