IPL 2022: Liam Livingstone’s all-round show helps Punjab Kings beat Chennai Super Kings by 54 runs

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IPL 2022: Liam Livingstone’s all-round show helps Punjab Kings beat Chennai Super Kings 

Liam Livingstone was the star of the night for Punjab Kings as he picked up two crucial wickets and scored a fifty to help his side beat Chennai Super Kings by runs in the 11th match of the IPL 2022 at Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai on Sunday. Livingstone took the wickets of Shivam Dube and Dwayne Bravo in his three overs spell and scored 60 runs in just 32 balls with the help of five fours and five sixes. 

CSK never got going in a 181 run chase as Vaibhav Arora picked two crucial wickets of Robin Uthappa and Moeen Ali while Kagiso Rabad removed last season’s orange cap holder Ruturaj Gaikwad cheaply. Arshdeep Singh clean-bowled CSK skipper Ravindra Jadeja for a duck. With four wickets down in the powerplay Chennai needed a partnership but Odean Smith dismissed Ambati Rayudu in the 8th over to shift the momentum entirely towards Punjab. 

Shivam Dube was the only CSK batter, who could trouble the PBKS bowlers. The Southpaw scored 57 runs in 36 balls with the help of six boundaries and three sixes. He stitched a crucial partnership with MS Dhoni for the 6th wicket but Liam Livingstone removed him in the 15th over. Liam then took another wicket in the over as he sent back Bravo for a duck Wickets kept tumbling at one end as Dhoni was stranded on the other side. 

 Earlier, Twenty20 nomad Liam Livingstone justified his Rs 11.50 crore price-tag with a smashing 32-ball 60. CSK gave away only 71 runs in the back-10 with a lot of credit going to their troika of overseas pacers — Dwaine Pretorius (4-0-30-2), Dwayne Bravo (3-0-32-1) and Chris Jordan (4-0-23-2), who used variations to good effect, stifling the opposition batters.

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In fact, bulk of the 55 dot balls came in the second half of the Punjab innings. Livingstone, one of the most destructive T20 batters across global leagues, finally came good with five fours and an equal number of sixes, sending the CSK bowlers on a leather-hunt during the initial overs. Deepak Chahar’s absence has severely handicapped ‘de-facto’ captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s options as rookie left-arm seamer Mukesh Choudhary (4-0-52-1) paid dearly for his inexperience coupled with jangling nerves.

There were 100 metre plus sixes off length balls and Livingstone would often shimmy down the track to disturb the length as he did with the wily Bravo.

Even the thick edges went for six with CSK bowlers looking clueless till he was there at the crease. In fact, Bravo, under pressure, forced Dhoni to stand up to the stumps in order to prevent Livingstone from charging down the track. ‘On paper’ skipper Jadeja (4-0-34-1) finally got his man caught at short third-man but even he looked ordinary with no help from the flat Brabourne Stadium deck.

Livingstone and Shikhar Dhawan (33 off 24 balls) added 95 for the third wicket in just 8.4 overs and it seemed that another 200 plus total was on the cards. By the time Dhawan was fooled by a Bravo slower, Punjab had laid the platform, scoring 109 in the first 10 overs, which sadly the later batters couldn’t capitalise on. But once Livingstone was out, the ‘Reds’ couldn’t maintain the momentum although Vidarbha’s Jitesh Sharma (26 off 17 balls) became the latest unheralded domestic talent to announce his arrival with some audacious strokeplay.

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Shahrukh Khan (6 off 11 balls), who has bullied domestic bowlers for fun in national tournaments, has been studied well and is finding it difficult to get going at the bigger stage against better quality of bowlers. Pretorius and Jordan kept deliveries wide and full outside the off-stump and at the base of bat, not allowing them anything in the arc.

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