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IANS

Brillant fifties by Shikhar Dhawan (70 off 50) and Mayank Agarwal (52 off 32) powered Punjab Kings to 198/5 against Mumbai Indians in an IPL 2022 match at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, here on Wednesday.

Apart from Shikhar and Mayank's brilliant hitting at the top, Jitesh Sharma (30 off 15) and Shahrukh Khan (15 not out off 6) gave late flourish to Punjab's innings at lower down the order.

Invited to bat first, openers Mayank Agarwal and Shikhar Dhawan gave Punjab Kings a flying start, scoring 65/0 in the Powerplay. Both Mayank and Shikhar looked in fine touch, dealt in boundaries and were also helped by some wayward bowling by Mumbai bowlers.

Mayank, in particular was playing with a sense of adventure and targeted spinner Murugan Ashwin and scored his first half-century of the season. However, the Punjab skipper couldn't continue his innings longer as Ashwin finally gave Mumbai their first breakthrough. Mayank went for a lofted drive but didn't get to the pitch of the ball and Suryakumar Yadav took a good catch at long off as Punjab were 97-1 after 9.3 overs.

Once Mayank was dismissed, Dhawan took over the mantle of being the aggressor and completed his half-century in 37 balls. But, he didn't get the required support from Jonny Bairstow (12) and Liam Livingstone (2), who came to bat next and couldn't score big for Punjab. Bairstow was far from his best and was dismissed by Jaydev Unadkat while an excellent yorker from Jasprit Bumrah sent dangerous Livingstone back to the pavilion.

With back to back wickets and significant drop in the scoring rate, Mumbai were clawing their way back into the game. However, Dhawan decided to free his arms and hit Basil Thampi for six but the bowler had the last laugh. It was a length ball from Thampi and Dhawan hit it into the hands of the fielder at long-on.

From there on, it was the responsibility of Jitesh Sharma and Shahrukh Khan to finish big for Punjab and they didn't disappoint their team. Jitesh played a blinder with a 15-ball 30 while Shahrukh in the final over smashed a couple of sixes and took Punjab Kings to 198/5 in 20 overs.

Brief scores: Punjab Kings 198/5 in 20 overs (Shikhar Dhawan 70, Mayank Agarwal 52; Basil Thampi (2/47) vs Mumbai Indians
 

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