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Royals down Punjab by 6 wickets to continue good start to IPL 2013

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The Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur continued to be a venerable fortress as the Rajasthan Royals picked up another crucial home win, beating the Kings XI Punjab by 6 wickets in a low scoring contest.

Put into bat on losing the toss, the Kings XI Punjab failed to bat out their 20 overs, being bowled out an unacceptable 7 deliveries shy of their quota for just 124. S Sreesanth landed a double blow in his first over, removing both openers - Adam Gilchrist (0) and Mandeep Singh (2), and that set Punjab back tremendously.

David Hussey chipped in with a crucial 41 to give the Punjab bowlers something to work with, but wickets from James Faulkner (2-30), Siddharth Trivedi (2-21) and Kevon Cooper (2-33) ensured that Punjab were never really in command of the contest.

Shane Watson then gave Rajasthan a good start, making a quickfire 32 from 19 balls to more or less decide the fate of this contest. Rajasthan lost wickets in the middle overs with Praveen Kumar swinging the ball prodigiously to record excellent figures of 2-10 from his 4 overs. However, Ajinkya Rahane kept his cool out in the middle and saw his side to victory with a sedate but crucial 34 from 42 balls. He was given useful company at the end by rookie keeper Sanju Samson, who made an unbeaten 27 from 23 balls.

The Royals scored just 1 run from the penultimate over to cause a slight flutter in the dressing room, but Samson knocked off the winning runs in the last over to see his side home with 4 balls to spare.

Up next for Fortress Jaipur is the visit of the Mumbai Indians on Wednesday while the Kings XI return to home comforts where they welcome the Champions, Kolkata Knight Riders, on Tuesday.

Teams:

Rajasthan Royals: Shane Watson, Ajinkya Rahane, Rahul Dravid (c), Stuart Binny, Brad Hodge, Sanju Samson (wk), James Faulkner, Kevon Cooper, S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila, Siddharth Trivedi

Kings XI Punjab: Mandeep Singh, Adam Gilchrist (c & wk), Manan Vohra, David Hussey, Gurkeerat Singh, Azhar Mahmood, R Sathish, Piyush Chawla, Ryan Harris, Praveen Kumar, Parvinder Awana

Mini Scorecard:

Kings XI Punjab 124 all out (18.5 overs, 6.58rpo)

D Hussey 41 (31) S Sreesanth 2-20

A Mahmood 23 (20) S Trivedi 2-21

Rajasthan Royals 126-4 (19.2 overs, 6.51rpo)

S Watson 32 (19) P Kumar 2-10

A Rahane 34* (42) P Chawla 1-22

Royals win by 6 wickets