New Delhi, April 20 : Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) rode on Chris Gayle's 28th Indian Premier League (IPL) fifty to register 163/7 in 20 overs against Delhi Capitals (DC) at the Feroz Shah Kotla here on Saturday.

Even as the DC bowlers looked to keep things tight after Gayle's dismissal, the visitors still managed to pick up 45 runs in the last five overs as Harpreet Brar finished with an unbeaten 20 off 12 balls.

For DC, Axar Patel and Sandeep Lamichhane were the stars of the show. While Axar finished with 2/22 from his three overs, Lamichhane picked up three wickets even though he was slightly on the expensive side, giving away 40 runs from his four overs.

Put into bat, KXIP looked to start positively. But Lamichhane struck in the second over itself as he had K.L. Rahul stumped by Rishabh Pant for just 12. The score read 13/1 as Mayank Agarwal joined Gayle in the middle.

But the partnership didn't last long as Kagiso Rabada ended Agarwal's struggle in the middle with a bouncer that climbed on him as he attempted the pull. Sherfane Rutherford completed an easy catch as the batsmen walked back to the dugout after making a 9-ball 2.

At the end of the powerplay, KXIP's score read 50/2 with Gayle still at the crease. But the DC bowlers had already tightened the screws on the visitors with some quality bowling and fielding.

The KXIP batsmen kept trying to up the ante but David Miller too failed to succeed as the Delhi bowlers kept piling the pressure with some disciplined bowling.

In an attempt to hit Axar out of the park, Miller hit one straight to Prithvi Shaw at the deep midwicket boundary and the opener didn't miss as Miller walked back for just 7. The score read 61/3 in the eighth over.

Mandeep Singh then joined Gayle, who seemed to be batting on another wicket as he kept tonking the ball from time to time to bring up another fifty in the tournament. Not looking to run too many singles, he focused mostly on hitting boundaries.

But just when it looked like Gayle would take the game away with his power hitting, Lamichhane dismissed the southpaw, caught by Axar for a 37-ball 69 (4x6, 6x5). Colin Ingram first caught the ball but as he was going over the rope, he threw it to Axar at long-on.

Sam Curran followed four balls later, caught and bowled by Lamichhane for a duck.

With the score reading 106/5, Ravichandran Ashwin walked in to join Mandeep in the 14th over. The two looked to finish with a flourish, but Axar sent back Mandeep (30), stumped by Pant in the 17th over. Having got a life on 21, Mandeep failed to capitalise on the chance.

Ashwin looked to provide the finishing touches as he hit a 14-ball 16, but he was dismissed in the 19th over as KXIP looked to score some quick runs.

Brief scores Kings XI Punjab: 163/7 in 20 overs (Chris Gayle 69, Mandeep Singh 30; Sandeep Lamichhane 3/40) vs Delhi Capitals

(Baidurjo Bhose can be contacted at baidurjo.b@ians.in)

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