END OF OVER:
20 | 5 Runs | KXIP: 136/8 (27 runs required, RR: 6.80)

  • Anureet Singh0 (3b)
  • Karanveer Singh5 (4b)
  • Chris Morris4-0-21-0
  • James Faulkner4-0-26-3

That is that for today. Make sure you read Alagappan Muthu's report. Hope you tune in tomorrow too. Until then, this is Deivarayan Muthu and Chandan Duorah slithering into the darkness.

Shivam: "Two run outs by Samson were the key, I think. They created the pressure which led to toppling. If he had scored a bit more, he could have nailed MOM as well."

James Faulkner, Man of the Match: I just back my T20 cricket to be honest. It was nice to see Hooda show a lot of confidence in his first game. Mitch and me get along very well [responding to his tussle with his Aussie team-mate]. Play on.

Steven Smith, Rajasthan Royals captain: The boys were very good. Hooda in his first game played brilliantly. Faulker also played well. He [Sanju] is a good little player and we can expect more from him in the future. It was nice to get over the top of them [Kings XI Punjab]. I am sure he [Watson] will be fine. We will get our combination right and it is nice to get a win under our belt early on."

The players shake hands and exchange pleasantries. Good to see Bailey call a spade a spade. He signs off with a smile, the same way a kid does while navigating his dinky car-toy round the dining table. Sanju effected a couple of sharp run outs to derail Kings XI Punjab's chase. They never recovered from that and Axar's promotion backfired badly. Rajasthan Royals continued to chip away at the wickets, the topping on the victory pizza being the stunning relay catch near the boundary from Southee and Karun. Faulkner stood out with another impactful all-round display. In other news, Lancashire have confirmed the signing of James Faulkner as cover for Peter Siddle.

Southee: It was a great win to start the IPL. We would have been happy with 140-150. We got more than what we wanted. We needed early wickets and go that through run outs and created pressure. There is some movement for the seamers, not much turn there.

Bailey, Kings XI Punjab captain: Pretty happy with the way we went with the ball. I thought 160 was about par on this track and quite chaseable. We could have taken a few opportunities, but I was happy at the half-way mark. A couple of run outs hurt. We changed the batting order a bit and in hindsight that was not a good idea. Steven Smith batted beautifully and James Faulkner batted well as well. To be honest, I am getting sick of talking about last year. It is time to move to this year (grins).

19.6
0
Morris to Anureet Singh, no run, low full toss on the leg stump, pushed back at the bowler. Rajasthan Royals start their campaign with a 26-run win
19.5
0
Morris to Anureet Singh, no run, speared full outside off, not quite a yorker. Anureet Singh misses again

Bounty for pace

12

Wickets for the pace bowlers in this match, for 195 runs in 29 overs; spinners had combined figures of 1 for 92 in 11 overs

The all-round team

6

Number of times a Royals player has scored 40-plus and taken 3 or more wickets in an IPL game. Overall in the IPL, it's been done 15 times

The chase masters

19

The number of times Kings XI have chased 160 or more and won in the IPL, easily the highest. CSK are next with 14 such wins

A dozen ducks

12

Zeroes for Virender Sehwag in all T20 games. Among Indian batsmen, only Gambhir, Yusuf Pathan, Piyush Chawla and Amit Mishra have more ducks

Chalk and cheese

24

Runs scored by Faulkner off Johnson in 13 balls. In the 11 balls that Johnson bowled to other batsmen, he conceded 1 run

Expensive Johnson

20

Runs conceded by Mitchell Johnson in the 19th over, his joint highest in a T20 game. He has conceded 20 runs eight times

King among strike bowlers

13.3

Sandeep Sharma's strike rate in IPL games, the best among all bowlers who've bowled at least 50 overs

A Royal duck

4

Number of ducks for Rahane when playing for Royals in the IPL. Among Royals batsmen, only Warne (7) has more

Royals' favourite opponent

8-5

Royals' win-loss record v Kings XI, the most games they've won versus any team in the IPL