On the other hand, Rajasthan could make some hard changes.
Ajinkya Rahane won the toss and in a decision that proved to be crucial in the context of the game, chose to bat first on a tricky surface. It was clear from the start that RR was all set with pulled up socks to take the match home.
While KXIP bowling front shined today their batting front failed. At 19/3 in the fourth over, Rahul was their main hope but Punjab needed the other batsmen to stand up and offer some support. Although Rahul remained not out and scored 95 off 70 balls, he could not take his team to victory. The team has great diversity in bowling. Despite Rahul fetched 32 runs from the last 12 deliveries, Rajasthan were still 15 runs short. He claimed the first wicket of Ajinkye Rahane (9) and then roared in the final over to claim three wickets and finish with figures of 3-34, using pace variations and bounce to outsmart the opposition. Andrew Tye grabbed a bagful at the end, but 158 proved enough for Royals. Rahul hit a six and two fours but that was too little and too late as Royals clinched a comfortable win. Between Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals, 16 matches have played so far in IPL. Chasing 159, Rajasthan kept Punjab to 143/7.
Marcus Stoinis's inclusion in the middle-order turned out to be a valuable one for KXIP in the previous game, and could be the solution for their middle-order worries along with Manoj Tiwary. Chasing 159, KXIP were restricted to 143 for seven in allotted 20 overs. Just 6 runs from the over.
Ravichandran Ashwin (KXIP captain), "Maybe eight runs more than the par, but I thought it was a 160 wicket".
Among the bowlers, young seamer Jofra Archer has done well to claim eight wickets from four matches while this IPL's costliest buy Jaydev Unadkat have also been amongst the wickets.
Buttler was then accompanied by Stokes (14) and the duo shared a 15-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
After Over 5: RR - 52 runs with the loss of 1 wicket.
Stuart Binny and Ben Stokes could not do much in the death overs as Mohit Sharma gave away just five in the 19th.
Skipper Ajinkya Rahane immediately brought Ish Sodhi into the attack after power-plays as the fields were spread the New Zealand spinner was instantly effective. Jofra Archer bowled at an excess of 145 on more than one ocassion and troubled Chris Gayle.
Whereas, Punjab has returned back to winning ways after losing two straight matches. A convincing win and KXIP could even propel themselves to second in the IPL standings. Due to this, not the hosts but Punjab will be having an advantage as they have some quality spinners in their side in the form of Ashwin, Mujeeb and Axar.