Bangalore: The cricket festival in India is nearing its end. This week starts the Playoff matches of the Indian Premier League 2023. With over 45 days of non-stop super entertaining 70 cricket matches by almost all the renowned players from all over the world, the season’s top 4 teams make it to the Playoffs. With Gujrat Titans (GT) securing the topmost position early on in the race, the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) secured the 2nd position and will face each other in Qualifier 1 on Tuesday in Chennai.
For the third position, the matches have been deciding positions for teams like Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), Rajasthan Royals (RR), Mumbai Indians (MI), and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The third position was locked in by the LSG, the two matches on Sunday were of immense importance for deciding the team in the 4th slot. The first match on Sunday between Sun Risers Hyderabad (SRH) and MI was won by MI which made the race to the Playoffs even more tough and interesting. Sunday’s 2nd match at the Chinaswamy stadium in Banglore was in jeopardy due to the rainfall and bad weather in Bangalore. With the match starting a little late, the toss was won by GT who decided to bowl first. With a stunning batting performance by the RCB batters and M. Shami, the score on the board after the first innings was 197 with a loss of 5 wickets. In those 20 overs, the crowd saw an electric knock of 101 not out by former RCB Captain Virat Kohli. Kohli hit his 2nd consecutive century in the 2 must-win matches smashing 13 fours and 1 six in 61 balls.
With a target of 198, batters of GT performed exceptionally with Shubhman Gill hitting a 104 not out off 52 balls. His 123-run partnership with Vijay Shankar (53 off 35) took the team to the victory line. With the ball being changed thrice, the match went to the last over with a requirement of 8 runs, a consecutive no-ball and wide from Wayne Parnell led to a 6-wicket victory for the Titans. Losing out on 1 point, RCB failed to secure the 4th position on the table and made way for MI who will face LSG in the Eliminator on
It is important that this century by Virat Kohli makes him the player with the most centuries in an IPL and the most runs made by an Indian in IPL 2023.