Nicholas Pooran (L) and Marcus Stoinis in IPL 2023© BCCI
A display of brutal hitting from Kyle Mayers and Marcus Stoinis fired Lucknow Super Giants to 257 for five, the second highest total in IPL history, against a profligate Punjab Kings in the IPL on Friday. Mayers (54 off 24) went on the rampage in the Powerplay before Stoinis (72 off 40) effortlessly collected boundaries at will to help his team set a massive target. The other important contributions came from Ayush Badoni (43 off 24) and Nicholas Pooran (45 off 19). Back to lead Punjab after three games, Shikhar Dhawan opted to field but his bowlers were all over the place on a belter of a track. Barring Rahul Chahar, all the other six bowlers leaked more than 10 runs per over. The usually frugal Arshdeep Singh leaked 54 runs in four overs and Kagiso Rabada gave away 52 runs in four overs although he had two wickets to show for his efforts.
The total was also the highest of the season and six runs shy of 263, the highest ever total in IPL history achieved by RCB back in 2013 when Chris Gayle played his epic 175-run knock.
LSG skipper KL Rahul (12 off 9) was the only batsman, who could not make use of ideal batting conditions. He was dropped on the first ball of the match off debutant Gurnoor Brar but could not make it count.
Mayers looked in menacingly tough from the get go as he smashed Arshdeep for four boundaries in his opening over. He started with a gorgeous drive through point before using his long levers to target the long on and deep mid-wicket region, collecting seven fours and four sixes in total.
Such was his confidence and he took a couple of strides forward to dispatch Rabada just over his head.
After Mayers fell inside the Powerplay, Stoinis and Badoni shared an 89-run stand off only 47 balls to maintain the momentum created by Mayers.
Stoinis played some breathtaking strokes in his belligerent knock that included five sixes and half a dozen boundaries.
Stoinis could have been dismissed in the 13th over but Liam Livingstone touched the boundary while trying to take a regulation catch at long on.
Pooran began his innings with three back to back off drives off Livingstone. LSG hammered 73 runs off the last 30 balls.
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