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Highest Opening partnerships in run chases coming in defeat in IPL

There have been 4 matches in IPL till now and all of them have ensured thorough entertainment. Be it sheer domination by KKR against RCB or a tight fight between CSK and Mumbai Indians, the fans have been treated to a variety of finishes. However, the cherry on the top was last night’s match when Rajasthan Royals took on Punjab. Off to a rollicking start, Rajasthan was cruising in the initial overs but a lower-order collapse had them settle for 186. In response, Punjab needed 70 runs in the 10 overs with 8 wickets in hand.

To make things even more simple, Pooran and Markram brought the equation down to 8 runs from the last 2 overs. However, Punjab pulled off the mother of all bottling up when they could not get 4 runs in the last over and lost the match by two runs. Karthik Tyagi was exceptional in the last over by just giving one run.

We are always told that a steady partnership makes the game very simple for the team in a T20 chase. However, Mayank and KL Rahul would disagree after being on the losing side multiple times after a great partnership.

In this article, we look at the highest opening partnerships that have not resulted in a win for the chasing team.

1. Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa in 2014

Due to the elections, the IPL was moved to the UAE in the first half. KKR had a strong core team has pulled off a win in 2012. In the match against Rajasthan Royals, KKR needed 171 runs to win. Uthappa and Gambhir got off to a brilliant start and scored 121 runs between themselves. Gambhir got 54 while Uthappa scored 65. However, after they got out the line-up collapsed with Manish Pandey, Yusuf Pathan, and Doeschate getting out on 0 and Russel getting 1. KKR was bundled out for 160 in 20 overs.

2. Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul in 2021

This was last night’s game when Punjab was in complete cruise control. Rahul and Mayank were majestical. Mayank brought up his half-century and made a total of 67 runs at a strike rate of 156. He was ably supported by Rahul who fell on 49 runs. When Rahul fell, Punjab’s scorecard read 120/1. They got these runs at a healthy run rate of above 10 runs. Unline the KKR match above, with Mayank and Rahul lost, Punjab didn’t spiral. Pooran and Markram continued from where the two left. However, Tyagi bowled a stellar final over and from needing 8 in the final 2, Punjab lost by 2 runs.

3. Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul

This year’s performance has a prelude last year when the same boys were involved last year as well. Last year against KKR, Punjab was batting second and had to chase down 164, a relatively modest score.  Rahul got off to a blistering start and got 74 while Mayank strode to a well-made 56. However, once the was broken on 115, the batting fell like a deck of cards. Mandeep Singh went for 0 and Pooran was gone for 16. Maxwell was at the other end but didn’t get enough balls. Punjab, at the end of 20 overs fell agonizingly short of their target and lost by 1 run.

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