RCB Knocked out, RR Secure Place in IPL Qualifier 2


The Narendra Modi Stadium witnessed a topsy-turvy game, with momentum swinging like a pendulum, keeping fans on the edge of their seats. For a moment, it felt like the chants of “Ee Sala Cup Namde” would continue to roar in Chennai. However, Rovman Powell’s calmness led RCB to nurse their wounds once again, as their quest for a maiden IPL title ended on a sour note.

The Royals had their fair share of nervy moments while chasing 173 after the dismissal of opener Yashasvi Jaiswal. They began the chase with Jaiswal and Tom Kohler-Cadmore adopting a mixed approach in the powerplay, being watchful of the threatening deliveries while punishing the ones in the hitting zone. This strategy helped them put 46 runs on the board before Tom (20) lost his wicket in the final over of the powerplay.

Jaiswal and skipper Sanju Samson forged a short yet effective 35-run partnership to keep the Royals on track. Cameron Green broke the stand by getting Jaiswal to glove it to Dinesh Karthik behind the stumps, marking the beginning of a collapse as Samson walked back to the dugout five balls later. Samson danced around the track but played his cards too soon, getting stumped for a score of 17 off a floated delivery from Karn Sharma.

Dhruv Jurel was run out following a moment of brilliance from Virat Kohli. As RR’s chase began to falter, Shimron Hetmyer and Riyan Parag tried to steady the ship. However, Mohammed Siraj castled Parag and struck again in the same over to dismiss Hetmyer, raising hopes of an RCB comeback.

Despite this, Powell struck two boundaries and cleared the fence on the final ball of the penultimate over to seal a 4-wicket win for Rajasthan, ending Bengaluru’s impressive six-win streak.

Earlier in the innings, Ravichandran Ashwin finished with figures of 2-19, while Avesh Khan was the pick of the bowlers with 3-44, bagging the important wickets of Rajat Patidar, Mahipal Lomror, and Dinesh Karthik. For RCB, Lomror played a crucial innings of 32 runs, while Virat Kohli smashed 33 and Rajat Patidar scored 34 runs off 22 balls.

Opting to bowl first, RR’s Trent Boult started his team’s charge with a fine two-run over, keeping Faf du Plessis and Virat Kohli at bay. Boult bowled another tight three-run over, but Avesh Khan’s 17-run over took the pressure off the RCB batters. Kohli started the over with a six over backward square leg before Faf slammed two fours. In the 5th over, Boult finally got a reward for his pressure by dismissing Faf for 17 off 14 balls.

Kohli added a record to his name by becoming the first batter to reach the milestone of 8,000 runs in the IPL, but lost his wicket to Yuzvendra Chahal in the eighth over. Kohli attempted a slog-sweep, but the ball went into the hands of fielder Donovan Ferreira, who took a fine catch.

RCB’s Cameron Green decided to up the ante in the 10th over, slamming Yuzvendra Chahal for a six and a four. However, in the 13th over, Ravichandran Ashwin showcased his craft, bamboozling Green and Glenn Maxwell. Green scored 27, while Maxwell continued his poor IPL form with a duck. Ashwin finished with outstanding figures of 2/19 from four overs, removing Green and Maxwell in successive deliveries in his final over.

Avesh Khan dismissed Rajat Patidar and successfully appealed for a leg-before against Dinesh Karthik, almost securing back-to-back wickets. After consulting the non-striker, Karthik reviewed, and replays revealed a nick on UltraEdge, leading the TV umpire to rule in favor of the batter. Chahal conceded seven runs in his last over to finish with figures of 1/43, while Avesh dismissed Karthik for 11 and Lomror for 32. RCB managed to gather 13 runs in the final over to post a competitive total of 172/8.

Brief score:
Royal Challengers Bengaluru 172/8 (Mahipal Lomror 32, Virat Kohli 33; Avesh Khan 3-44) vs Rajasthan Royals 174/6 (Yashasvi Jaiswal 45, Riyan Parag 36; Mohammed Siraj 2-33).

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