While Rahul smashed seven fours and five sixes in his 50-ball 91, Hooda, playing his first game since the last IPL, plundered six maximums and four boundaries as he blazed his way to 64 off just 28 balls.
Put into bat, Punjab lost opener Mayank Agarwal (14) early, who edged it back to Royals captain and wicketkeeper Sanju Samson for IPL debutant Chetan Sakariya’s first wicket.
.@klrahul11’s fantastic knock comes to an end on 91.Live – https://t.co/PhX8FyJiZZ #RRvPBKS #VIVOIPL https://t.co/bkXP6vVdBt
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) 1618243004000
He ended being the pick of the bowlers, conceding only five runs in the 20th over.
2000 and counting in #PBKS colours@klrahul11 breaches the 2K-run mark 🙌🙌#RRvPBKS https://t.co/PPCoBDxyWN
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) 1618242594000
Rahul, who got his first four with a glance to the fine-leg fence, and Chris Gayle (40 off 28) gave the team a good start with their 67-run stand.
Hooda departs after a quick-fire innings of 64 off 28 deliveries 👌👌Live – https://t.co/WNSqxSOXpd #RRvPBKS… https://t.co/RfwpM02hMB
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) 1618242139000
Rahul got a ‘life’ after Ben Stokes dropped him at the fence in the seventh over even as Gayle looked in his elements.
KL: Wankhede ka gunda hu mainHooda: Main bhi 😋#SaddaPunjab #IPL2021 #PunjabKings #RRvPBKS https://t.co/F97dDWZjN4
— Punjab Kings (@PunjabKingsIPL) 1618241419000
The duo then took on Stokes, as Gayle hit his 350th IPL six, a pull over deep square in the 8th over with Punjab racing to 70 for one.
𝟐KL Rahul ♥️😍Saddi run-machine 😍#SaddaPunjab #IPL2021 #PunjabKings #CaptainPunjab #RRvPBKS @klrahul11 https://t.co/HeARZgoSBJ
— Punjab Kings (@PunjabKingsIPL) 1618243265000
Gayle was dropped by leggie Rahul Tewatia (0/25) off his own bowling and the very next ball, the left-hander smashed a six.
However, in the 10th over, Riyan Parag (1/7) removed Gayle, who was holed out to Stokes in the deep.
Last game of #IPL2020 – 5️⃣0️⃣* vs CSKFirst game of #IPL2021 – 5️⃣0️⃣* vs RRHurricane Hooda continuing from wher… https://t.co/hqzOkYOFFl
— Punjab Kings (@PunjabKingsIPL) 1618241857000
Rahul then changed gears and got to his fifty with a six over Shivam Dube’s (0/20) head in the 13th over.
Hooda then smashed two maximums in the same over and then struck three sixes off Shreyas Gopal (0/40) in the next as Punjab went ballistic.
It was Rahul and Hooda’s show at the Wankhede that made the difference to their total as the duo tore into the opposition attack on way to to their 105-run stand.
Courtesy their monstrous hitting, Punjab added 111 runs in the final eight overs.
Hooda, who had made a 62 against CSK in his last competitive game in November, had stormed out of the Baroda camp ahead of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy after claiming that Krunal Pandya misbehaved with him. Hooda was subsequently suspended.