KXIP vs RR: Tewatia redeems himself in style as Rajasthan pip Punjab in a run-fest
Rajasthan Royals (RR) chased down Kings XI Punjab’s (KXIP) total of 223 with wickets in hand to register the highest chase ever in IPL history. Mayank Agarwal (106 of 50) ended up on the losing side in spite of playing the IPL innings of his life.
In the first 19 balls he played, Tewatia could only manage 8 runs without being able to score a single boundary. In the next 12, he got 45, clearing the boundary on the full as many as seven times.
With 51 needed of the last three and Rahul Tewatia, struggling at 17 of 23 at that moment, Rajasthan Royals looked more or less out of the game.
6,6,6,6,0,6 read Cottrell’s 18th over as Tewatia took him to the cleaners. The deficit was now reduced to 21. In a matter of one over, Tewatia had gone from a villain to a hero for his franchisee.
At one moment in the game, Sanju Samson had denied Tewatia a single as the latter was struggling in the middle. His stay in the middle was so painful that the commentators had a lengthy discussion that he should retire hurt, to not hurt the team’s chances at victory any further.
Tewatia ended up scoring 51 of 43, losing his wicket only when 2 were needed of the last over.
Before that, Sanju Samson (85 of 42) went berserk on the Punjab bowlers as he hit the ball out of the park at will. Steven Smith (50 of 27), also played a good knock at the top.
Smith’s decision to put KXIP in to bat first proved costly and Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul (69 of 54) added 183 runs for the first wicket. The RR bowlers were taken to the cleaners as KXIP powered their way to 223-3 in the stipulated 20 overs. Nicolas Pooran (25* of 8) finally turned up for his franchisee with a breezy cameo at the fag end of the innings.
Mayank Agarwal, in his maiden IPL century, cleared the boundaries on the full 7 seven times, alongside 10 boundaries.
Ankit Rajpoot was Rajasthan’s most economical bowler, in spite of giving away as many as 39 runs in his 4. For Punjab, Ravi Bishnoi and Glenn Maxwell were the only two bowlers to have economy rates of less than 10.
Sharjah, lived up to its reputation of being a nightmare for the bowlers as 449 runs were scored in the 40 overs, including as many as 29 sixes and 34 fours.
Kings XI Punjab: 223 for 2 in 20 overs (Mayank Agarwal 106, KL Rahul 69; Ankit Rajpoot 1/39).
Rajasthan Ryals: 226 for 6 in 19.3 overs (Sanju Samson 85, Rahul Tewatia 53, Steve Smith 50; Mohammed Shami 3/53).