It was a day to remember for Punjab Kings fans as two of their star players claimed hat-tricks of varying natures in different competitions on Monday. At the T20 World Cup, KL Rahul scored his third consecutive fifty, scoring an unbeaten 54 against Namibia to give India a formidable win in their final game of the tournament. Earlier in the day, Ravi Bishnoi picked up a hat-trick in his very first over against Andhra Pradesh in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.
Playing their final group game against Namibia, team India’s bowlers did well to restrict Namibia for 132 runs, and India’s openers chased that on a canter. Both Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul got fifties in that chase, as the 2007 T20I champions claimed a nine wicket victory with more than four overs to spare.
Rahul started off slowly with Rohit Sharma taking on the mantle to begin with, but caught up with his partner as the innings progressed. The Punjab Kings captain scored some of his trademark shots, including the pick-up shots over mid-wicket and square leg. Rahul smashed four fours and two sixes as he ended his innings on 54*.
This was the third consecutive fifty for the Indian batsman, who followed on from his previous two scores of 69 and 50 against Afghanistan and Scotland respectively. Rahul has starred heavily in all three wins for India in the T20 World Cup, and now would hope to continue that form when his side host New Zealand in the weeks ahead.
Hat-trick for Bishnoi
Earlier in the day, budding leg spinner Ravi Bishnoi made his mark on the 2021 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, as he claimed a hat-trick in his very first over in Rajasthan’s game against Andhra Pradesh.
Defending a modest total of 150, Rajasthan needed a good start from their bowlers and up stepped Ravi Bishnoi. The Punjab Kings leggie picked up his first ever hat-trick in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, as he had the number of Ashwin Hebbar, Ricky Bhui and Pinniniti Tapaswi.
Bishnoi claimed a hat-trick with his first four balls of his spell, ending with figures of 3/20 as Rajasthan picked up a nervy 11 run win over their opponents. The win sees them continue their perfect start to the competition, and guarantees them a passage into the next round of the 2021 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.