A match to remember in the history of IPL for every cricket fan as Rajasthan Royals and Punjab Kings continue their tough rivalry in the first match of the season for both franchises.
With the spices of KL Rahul, Deepak Hooda and Gayle in first innings Punjab 221 runs in 20 overs while Rajasthan makes tough looking target easy with the century of new skipper Sanju Samson and small cameo’s in the middle order, though Royals couldn’t manage to make through it and lost the winning match by just 4 runs on the last bowl.
On the perfectly batting favorable pitch at Wankhede Stadium, Royals won the toss and opted bowl first but Kings made it clear from the very first over as Rahul and Gayle hit some fine shots in power play despite losing a wicket. Gayle got caught on 40 runs but Kings didn’t stop as Deepak Hooda played an unexpected knock, scored 64 off 28 balls with 4 fours and 6 sixes.
While Rahul missed his century by 9 runs in the 19th over when Tewatia made an amazing effort for catch at boundary line. Punjab scored 221 runs off 6 wickets while Rajasthan used total 8 bowling options most by any team in the league history.
In the second inning Rajasthan made an unwanted decision of sending Stokes as an opener while Buttler on no. 4. Despite losing 3 wickets before team crosses 100 runs skipper Sanju Samson stayed strong and with the help of young Indian middle order batsmen kept the team’s hopes alive.
Samson scored an astonishing knock of 119 runs in 63 balls with 12 fours and 7 sixes. Royals could expect more from settled middle order batsmen as all of them were looking on fire but couldn’t manage to control their nerves.
While in the last over Royals needed 13 runs, Arshdeep Kaur got through it with some class variations in his bowling, gave only 2 runs in first three bowls though Samson hit a six on fourth but failed to score any run on fifth bowl which resulted as RR needed 5 runs on last bowl. Samson hit a long shot but fell short few inches as got caught at boundary line.
Punjab Kings: 221/6 (KL Rahul 91, Hooda 64, Sakaria 1-31)
Rajasthan Royals: 217/7 (Samson 119, Parag 25, Shami 2-33)