Another Amla hundred in vain as Kings XI suffer damaging defeat


Kings XI Punjab once again failed to take advantage of a Hashim Amla century as their hopes of making the Indian Premier League play-offs were dented by a six-wicket defeat to Gujarat Lions in Mohali.

Amla struck 104 not out from 60 balls against Mumbai Indians on April 20, only to see his team beaten.

The South Africa batsman matched that score on Sunday before falling in the final over as the Kings XI posted a healthy total of 189-3.

Yet Punjab could not capitalise on Amla's superb performance, a dismal showing in the field enabling Gujarat to make it home with two balls to spare.

Dwayne Smith was dropped twice on his way to 74 from 39 balls for the Lions, while there was also a let-off for skipper Suresh Raina (39) before Dinesh Karthik (31 not out) completed a successful chase in the company of Ravindra Jadeja.

The Kings XI therefore remain three points outside the play-offs, with one game in hand on fourth-placed Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Amla could hardly have done more as he progressed serenely to his second hundred of the competition with the aid of eight fours and five maximums.

After Martin Guptill had fallen to Pradeep Sangwan in the first over, Amla put on 125 for the second wicket with Shaun Marsh (58) and continued to prosper after the Australian departed.

A flat six over cover in the final over took Amla to three figures, but he did not emerge for Gujarat's chase after being hit on the toe by the next delivery from Basil Thampi, which trapped him lbw.

Smith gave the Lions a flying start in reply, taking advantage of reprieves on 42 and 51 as he dominated an opening stand of 91 with Ishan Kishan (29).

By the time Smith eventually fell to Glenn Maxwell, the Lions were in control and more sloppy fielding ultimately proved costly for the Kings XI despite Sandeep Sharma picking up two wickets in an economical 18th over.