Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - Dube, Jaiswal nullify Ruturaj century in big RR win. Jaiswal smashed a 19-ball half-century to get RR going.
Jaiswal smashed a 19-ball half-century to get RR going.
The fresh wicket at Abu Dhabi came as much-needed batting respite after a string of two-paced pitches, and both CSK and RR made merry. Ruturaj Gaikwad took the first advantage, scoring a pristine century – with a six off the last ball of the innings – before Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shivam Dube combined to render that first-innings effort as a mere consolation for the CSK opener. Rajasthan Royals eventually snared Chennai Super Kings' 189/4 with 15 balls and seven wickets to spare.
How good was Ruturaj Gaikwad?
Numbers first – In just his first full season – without extended quarantines and rushed returns from covid-hit illness – Ruturaj has made it to the short six-man (now seven) list of CSK players with 500-plus runs this season. His big six off the last ball to get to triple figures, also made him the youngest to do so for the franchise. He began with a sweetly-timed forward punch for a four off debutant Akash Singh, and built with patience through the PowerPlay overs like he's become accustomed to doing this season.
Rahul Tewatia poked holes in CSK's innings through the middle-overs but Ruturaj's command over spin meant he stood firm at one end and continued to push his side forward. The CSK opener turned two of his biggest strengths – hitting through and over extra cover, and using his feet to get quick boundaries.
The full flourish came in the second half when the ball began to come on much better after being sticky at the start, as Ruturaj would later admit. He launched into Tewatia in the over right after the timeout and made it a forgettable first outing for rookie Akash, who bore the brunt of the CSK man's hitting range – going for 17 in an over.
What happened in the last three overs?
Ravindra Jadeja and Ruturaj gave CSK's second-half ascent a whole new gear. Mustafizur Rahman, who's been influential with his change of pace in the death overs since the restart in UAE, was tonked around disdainfully by both the batsmen. Both saw through the cutters, and positioned themselves smartly to counter his attempts at wide yorkers to maximise the death overs.
Fourteen came off his 18th over and 12 off Sakariya's 19th, before the 20th over fetched as many as 22 from Mustafizur – including an astonishing six where Jadeja went down on a knee in a premeditated stance and slog-swept the attempted yorker. Just when it seemed like Ruturaj would be denied a shot at getting to a hundred, Jadeja turned the strike over with two balls to play. Off the last delivery, Ruturaj shuffled across and deposited the shortish delivery well into the deep square leg fence to get to his century and take CSK to 189 for 4.
Gaikwad scored his maiden IPL century.
How was Rajasthan Royals' response?
On the true pitch, Yashasvi Jaiswal and Evin Lewis came out with the license to swing freely through the line as there was no two-pacedness to account for. Josh Hazlewood's back-of-a-length bowling – which served him well in IPL's return to UAE – was tonked around from the very beginning, as he started off with a 16-run over in the second. The first four flew off Jaiswal's outside edge but there were two more fours that the left-hander smashed with complete control over deep mid-wicket and through covers.
Evin Lewis went after Sam Curran, who without any movement ended up dishing out several hit-me deliveries. The RR pair obliged to take 17 of his over, before dishing out similar treatment to Shardul Thakur in the fourth. Jaiswal took a special liking for Hazlewood, upping the attack on the Australian quick by tonking three sixes and a four off successive deliveries. In a space of less than 25 minutes since Ruturaj got to his fabulous century, RR blew CSK's defence of their total out of the water with 75/0 in 5 overs.
Didn't two wickets make a difference?
Thakur took out Lewis with an innocuous short ball and Jaiswal fell for an incredible 21-ball 50 to KM Asif's pacy first ball, but there was no real change in direction. Sanju Samson and Shivam Dube – promoted ahead of David Miller, Rahul Tewatia and Glenn Phillips – carried forward with the same murderous intentions. Samson welcomed Moeen Ali with a reverse sweep for a four and Dube tonked Ravindra Jadeja on arrival over long-on. Dube then proceeded to use his long levers against Moeen as the pair carried RR to 119 for 2 at the halfway stage.
Samson allowed Dube take centre stage in his return to the line-up. The conditions allowed Dube to build on his confidence and he grew into his knock. Curran made that process easier by bowling rank full tosses that Dube dutifully carted away. Hazlewood returned when he didn't have to bowl to his chief tormentor Jaiswal, but Dube wasn't any easier to bowl at as he comfortably hit two more fours to inch towards his half-century. He got it off Thakur and carried on, in the company of Glenn Phillips, to finish off the chase in the 18th over.
Where does this win do for RR?
Beyond a big lift to their morale and ‘momentum', the two crucial points puts them on par with the other three gritty participants in the dogfight for the playoffs. All four of them – KKR, PBKS, RR and MI – have 10 points from 12 games, with RR now moving up to sixth and pushing MI to seventh on the basis of NRR.
Brief Scores: Chennai Super Kings 189/4 in 20 overs (Ruturaj Gaikwad 101*, Ravindra Jadeja 32*; Rahul Tewatia 3-39) lost to Rajasthan Royals 190/3 in 17.3 overs (Shivam Dube 64*, Yashasvi Jaiswal 50; Shardul Thakur 2-30) by 7 wickets
What next for the teams?
CSK have just a day's break before taking on second-placed DC in Dubai in their bid to confirm a top-two spot. RR meanwhile, take their renewed hopes to Sharjah, where fellow mid-table tusslers Mumbai Indians play them on Tuesday.