Coming to the IPL 2018 mega auction, the Royal Challengers Bangalore had surprisingly parted ways with Chris Gayle. Since his RCB debut in 2011, Chris Gayle turned himself into a T20 megastar. However, a poor IPL 2017 was enough for RCB to part ways with the self-proclaimed 'Universe Boss'. At the 2018 Auction, Gayle was presented thrice but the big West Indian entertained no bids in the first two rounds. In the third and final round, KXIP placed a bid for Gayle at his base price and ended up taking him to the Lion's Den for a bargain. Gayle has scripted one of the strongest IPL comebacks since then.
The Kings XI were hosting the Sunrisers Hyderabad at Mohali in the 16th match of IPL 2018. After home skipper Ravichandran Ashwin chose to bat first, Chris Gayle opened the innings with KL Rahul. This was Gayle's second match for the Kings XI and he was coming off a fifty in his debut KXIP innings against CSK. In this knock, Gayle was cautious in the beginning but did make it a point to occasionally hit strike SRH bowlers like Rashid Khan for a six or two. Gayle got to his fifty in 39 balls. For a player who has smashed an IPL hundred in 30 balls, 39 balls was a tedious length of time to get to 50.
Soon enough, Gayle switched gears following his fifty and took on Rashid Khan. The West Indian ended up hitting four consecutive sixes in a Rashid Khan over and his onslaught continued. On his 58th ball, Chris Gayle ran a risky single to get to his 100.
Gayle was unbeaten at the end of the innings with 104 runs to his name. He hit 11 sixes against a very formidable SRH bowling lineup. KXIP's score of 193 was enough to defend against a very strong SRH lineup led by captain Kane Williamson's fifty. KXIP won the match by 15 runs. Here are the highlights for his innings.
Chris Gayle continued his great form for KXIP in IPL 2018 but the team lost form towards the end of the season and did not make the playoffs. Gayle also performed very well in IPL 2019 and scored near to 500 runs in the season. He was retained by KXIP for IPL 2020. The BCCI currently has IPL 2020 postponed due to the India lockdown to combat the novel coronavirus.