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IPL 7: Maxwell, Miller lead KXIP to stunning opening win over CSK

Result: Kings XI Punjab beat Chennai Super Kings by 6 wickets with 7 balls to spare

Toss: Chennai Super Kings won the toss and chose to bat first

CSK 205/4 (McCullum 67, Smith 66): Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith hooked, cut and bashed their way to rapid-fire half centuries as CSK racked up an intimidating total of 205/4 against Kings XI Punjab.

The pair added 70 from the PowerPlay overs and the 100 came up in the 10th over. McCullum particularly severe on Mitchell Johnson, slashing him over point with an audacious upper cut before tonking him over long-on. He made sure the other bowlers didn’t feel left out either, actually charging down the track at Parvinder Awana to crash him over long-on as well.

KIXP co-owner Preity Zinta was overjoyed by her team's win over CSK

KIXP co-owner Preity Zinta was overjoyed by her team's win over CSK

McCullum eventually perished for 67 from 45 balls, having hit four fours and five sixes, having added 123 runs with Smith. who was particularly savage on Glenn Maxwell, plonking his left foot down the track and smashing back over his head for six twice. By the time, Smith was finally dismissed in the 17th over – for 66 from 43 balls - KXIP were running for cover.

Suresh Raina, playing his 100th IPL game, made a brisk 24 but it was left to MS Dhoni and Dwayne Bravo to provide the final push. KXIP captain George turned to Lakshmipathy Balaji for the last over, and immediately regretted it when Dhoni smashed a huge six over long-on. Bravo added another maximum over extra-cover two balls later and though Dhoni holed-out to long-on off the last ball, his 26 from 11 balls took CSK past 200 and set up daunting chase for Kings XI.

Kings XI Punjab 206/4 (Maxwell 95, Miller 54*): Glenn Maxwell produced a breath-taking display of power hitting to demolish the Chennai Super Kings bowling attack and help his side chase down 206 to win their opening game against the perennial title contenders.

KXIP began their pursuit in mixed fashion. A glass-wearing Virender Sehwag took a fancy to Ashish Nehra, smashing four fours from five deliveries in the third over, but lost his legstump to the final delivery. When Cheteshwar Pujara and Akshar Patel departed in quick succession, both lbw to R Ashwin, Punjab looked to be wobbling at 52/3 despite a scoring rate of 10 an over.

Maxwell is one of the most dangerous batsmen in the world though and the big target did not intimidate him. He drove, pulled, swept and reverse-swept devastating effect, finding gaps in the field with ease as he plundered 15 fours. He was also the beneficiary of a huge slice of luck when one of his reverse-sweeps went horribly wrong. The ball took the shoulder of the bat and looped gently to short third man, where Ashish Nehra stuck out his hands hoped the ball would fall into them. Unfortunately for Nehra and CSK, the ball did not.

Two balls later Faf Du Plessis put down a sharp chance at mid-off to reprieve David Miller and that was all she wrote. Maxwell was simply in the zone as he charged to 95 from 42 balls but with a century in sight, was surprised by a Dwayne Smith yorker and lost his legstump.

That’s when Miller took over. He had wisely played second-fiddle while Maxwell was going all guns blazing but made sure there would be no last minute wobbles, taking all the excitement out of the game by smacking Ravindra Jadeja for two sixes in the 17th over. It was a canter from there.

Turning Point: Maxwell was on 37 when Nehra failed to get even his fingers to a simple chance. Dropped catches have been a feature in this tournament so far and this one ultimately cost CSK the match.

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Published Date: Apr 18, 2014 20:12 PM | Updated Date: Apr 18, 2014 20:12 PM

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