Mandeep Singh played a splendid innings that put his side Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) firmly in control of the IPL playoffs race despite the enormous personal loss of losing his father. Kings XI Punjab have emphatically turned around their season in the past few weeks. After struggling in the initial seven matches losing 6 and winning only 1, KXIP have risen up to the top-four with a five-game win streak.
KXIP are now fourth in the standings after defeating Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets on Monday. The credit for the run-chase at Sharjah goes to Mandeep Singh, who scored an unbeaten 66 runs to take his side to victory,
Mandeep Singh : Late Father Told Me To Remain Unbeaten
The performance comes on the back of some depressing news for Mandeep Singh. He had lost his father on last Friday night but continued to play on for KXIP. Despite the enormous personal loss, Mandeep Singh played a splendid innings remaining unbeaten on 66 that put his side firmly in control of the IPL playoffs race.
Mandeep Singh talked about his father after the match, saying that his father had asked him to stay unbeaten in all games and he talked to KL Rahul and Chris Gayle both of whom told him to keep batting and play till the end.
“This was very special. My father always used to tell me to remain not out in every game, definitely special. He always used to tell me, whether you score 100 or 200, you should be not out. I had a talk with Rahul before the start of the game. Last game I was trying to score quicker and I’m always comfortable doing that.”
“I told Rahul if I play my normal game, I will win the game and I had the belief. He (Rahul) told me to back my game and play the way I want to play, pretty happy with the win. He (Gayle) was just telling me to keep batting and play till the end and I just told him that he should never retire. He is too good. We are very excited.”
Kings XI Punjab, who had lost six of its first seven league games, broke into the top four with their fifth consecutive win and pushed Kolkata down to fifth. Although both Punjab and Kolkata have 12 points from 12 games, but Punjab is ahead on net run-rate.
Mandeep Singh Put Personal Tragedy Behind Him By Scoring 66 Not Out
Mandeep Singh, whose father died Friday, put the personal tragedy behind him and scored an unbeaten 66 off 56 balls with eight fours and two sixes, while Chris Gayle hit five sixes and two fours in scoring 51 off 29 balls as Punjab reached 150/2 with seven balls to spare. Skipper KL Rahul who scored 28 off 25 balls and Chris Gayle were dismissed. but Nicholas Pooran and opener Mandeep Singh remained unbeaten.
Earlier, fast bowler Mohammed Shami grabbed 3-35 and Ravi Bishnoi claimed 2-20 with his sharp googlies and legbreaks to restrict Kolkata to 149/9 with Shubman Gill top scoring with 57 and Eoin Morgan scoring 40.