David Miller’s knock of 89 not out from 44 balls wasn’t enough to save the Kings XI Punjab from defeat against the Sunrisers Hyderabad on Monday.
The win took SRH to fourth position in the IPL standings, while KXIP continued to remain at the floor of the standings with just two wins from 12 matches.
KXIP, chasing 186 for victory, fell five runs short on 180-7 after Beuran Hendricks took 2-40 in four overs in a rare start for KXIP.
The Sunrisers batted first and were cruising at 121-2 thanks to the 81 runs David Warner hit off 52 balls before he was caught by Gurkeerat Singh off the bowling of Hendricks.
The Cape Cobras bowler also claimed the wicket of Eoin Morgan for 17 and the Sunrisers eventually finished on 185-5.
Miller, who walked in to bat in the eighth over with the score reading 60-3, held fort until the end. The left-hander batted on despite wickets falling at the other end, and turned on the heat in the final stretch of the innings.
At the end of the 16th over, Miller had scored 32 from 25 balls, and KXIP needed to get 70 from 24 balls. That is when the devastating Miller that the world knows cut loose; the left-hander struck seven sixes and a four in the next 19 balls to give the KXIP chase a new life.
Needing to score 28 off the final over, Miller deposited the first two balls into the stands, before keeping out a yorker. The fourth ball took the outside edge of the bat and raced to the third man boundary, reducing the equation to 12 from the last two balls.
The penultimate ball of the match was a full length delivery which didn’t fetch any runs. Though the last ball was hit into the stands at long on, that wouldn’t be still enough for KXIP as they finished six short.
For Miller, who remained unbeaten on 89 from 44 balls and hit two fours and nine sixes, it was one of those unusual days where despite posting the highest score in the match and playing perhaps the best innings of the day, it still couldn’t lead the team to a win.
Photo by: Ron Gaunt/SPORTZPICS/BCCI