Chris Gayle played his first match in the ongoing Indian Premier League 2020 on Thursday against RCB.
Chris Gayle returned for Kings XI Punjab when he was included in the playing eleven against Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore in the ongoing Indian Premier League 2020 on Thursday.
The Jamaican cricketer was hit by a stomach bug due to which he had to spend a few days in the hospital. But the ‘Universe Boss’ is back and KXIP, who have lost six out of the seven matches, will be boosted by his addition to the Playing XI.
Though the Sharjah wicket has been slowing gradually, the smaller ground dimensions are ideal for someone like Gayle to go on a six-hitting spree. Having recovered fully, Gayle replaced Mujeeb Ur Rahman in his first appearance in IPL 2020.
Former KXIP mentor Virender Sehwag had said put his confidence in Gayle before the match and said, “Note that Gayle’s record against Bangalore is impeccable. An average of 54, and his strike rate is known to all bowlers. So let Gayle open with the Serious Man Mayank (Agarwal), and KL can come in at No.3 to maintain the balance of the team,” Sehwag said on his YouTube show ‘Viru ki Baithak’.
The inability to produce an all-round show and close out games they should have won has led to KXIP losing six out of their seven matches. But KXIP can take confidence from the fact their only win in the tournament has come against RCB, who look a much more potent squad since their last meeting on September 24.
Gayle is the 9th highest scorer in the IPL with 4484 runs in 125 matches at 41.13 with 6 hundreds and 28 half-centuries. He holds multiple batting records in the league including the most sixes (326), most number of hundreds (6), the highest individual score (175 not out), among others.
Meanwhile, RCB skipper Virat Kohli won the toss and opted to bat against Kings XI Punjab.
RCB named an unchanged team while KXIP brought in Chris Gayle for the first time this season besides handing a debut cap to Deepak Hooda.
M Ashwin was also brought in by the Punjab side. The three players replaced an injured Mandeep Singh, Prabhsimran Singh and Mujeeb Zadran.
Kings XI Punjab: Chris Gayle, KL Rahul (C), Mayank Agarwal, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Ravi Bishnoi and Arshdeep Singh.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli (C), Devdutt Padikkal, Aaron Finch, AB de Villiers, Washington Sundar, Shivam Dube, Chris Morris, Isuru Udana, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj and Yuzvendra Chahal.
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