Yes, we lost to Pune on 8th April but that didn't demoralize us. The scars were fresh but the Kings had to live up to their name as it was their first home match. Mohali’s PCA stadium was painted red Kings XI Punjab Style. With the VIP ticket in my hand the first word that came to my mind when I saw the ground from my seat was amazing.
The stadium was filled with thousands of crazy and die-hard Kings XI Punjab fans. They all looked spectacular with their flags and banners. The whole stadium was bleeding red. Before the match, there were live performances by some of the best Punjabi artists. Artists like Miss Pooja and Gippy Garewal performed for the fans on some of their popular chartbusters. The Toss was won by the Kings and they decided to bowl first. Everyone thought it was a bad decision but team KXIP had some other plans, Revenge. The team started really well and Pune warriors were down to 37 with the loss of 3 wickets. By the end of the 10th over Pune lost 4 wickets for just 61 runs.
Every fan was cheering for their home team. I had a chance to talk to some KXIP fans and they were quite sure that our team would register a thumping 1st win of the season. Adam Gilchrist, the charismatic captain, made Pune surrender their innings at 115 in just 19 overs by some great bowling changes which was equally supported by fantastic fielding from the KXIP team. Dimitri Mascarenhas was the star of the 1st half as he took 5 wickets for just 25 runs from his four overs.
When Kings XI Punjab came out to bat, Ashok Dinda struck for Pune on the very first ball of the match as he sent Valthaty back to the dugout for a duck. I thought Pune might just get back into the game but Shaun Marsh who was missed in the earlier game by the fans stepped up. He attacked the Pune Warriors’ bowlers along with Adam Gilchrist right from the word go. Pune was blown away by the brilliance of Marsh as he went on to score 64 (n/o). Although we lost Adam in the pursuit of 116 runs, Piyush Chawla gave full support to Marsh till the end.
I wasn't surprised by the win, infact I was relieved and satisfied just like every other KXIP fan. Dimitri Mascarenhas was adjudged the man of the match for his stunning bowling performance. While I was leaving the stadium after the match I could only hear one thing the fans had to say “Aay hoyi na gal”. The match was wonderful and the result even better. Keep those points coming Punjab!