Rajasthan Royals suffered their first loss in IPL 2022.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore got the better of Rajasthan Royals in Match 13 of IPL 2022 by four wickets at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on April 5. By virtue of this win, RCB not only registered a second straight victory but also ended the Royals’ unbeaten run. At one point, Bangalore’s run chase seemed to be losing the plot before their middle-order came to the fore and saved the day for them.
After being invited to bat first by RCB skipper Faf du Plessis, Rajasthan lost opener Yashasvi Jaiswal early before in-form Jos Buttler and Devdutt Padikkal added 70 runs for the second wicket stand. Padikkal chipped in with a crucial 29-ball 37 as Skipper Sanju Samson had a rare failure as he walked back for eight. An unbeaten 83-run stand between Buttler and Shimron Hetmyer took RR to a fighting total of 169/3. The Englishman scored 70* runs from 47 deliveries while Hetmyer scored a blistering 31-ball 42*.
In reply, Bangalore meant business right away as openers Faf du Plessis and Anuj Rawat added 55 runs for the opening stand. Nonetheless, once the duo was dismissed in quick succession, wickets started falling at regular intervals including that of batting megastar Virat Kohli. But, the middle-order duo of Dinesh Karthik and Shahbaz Ahmed never allowed the Rajasthan bowlers to make a comeback as they stitched in a match-winning partnership of 67 runs for the sixth wicket.
Ahmed was bowled for 45 by Trent Boult, but Karthik (44*) and Harshal Patel then took RCB past the finish line in the final over.
Losing skipper, Sanju Samson said:
I can’t point out one moment where we lost the game. I thought it was a great effort to put up that total on such a slow wicket after losing the toss. Jos and Hetmyer batted brilliantly at the death. Taking the match to the last over with the dew coming in was a great effort as well. (On whether he asked the umpires to change the ball because of dew) No I didn’t, I was confident about my bowlers. DK is someone with a lot of experience. We just need to take our time to set the field. Lot of positives to take out of this loss, and we can learn a lot of things as well.
Winning skipper, Faf du Plessis said:
To pull it out of nowhere, you need some great characters and DK is as great a character as you can get. His composure under pressure is amazing. He is really calm and such a great asset to us. We bowled really well, up to the 18th over and then Jos got some good shots. Got a score which we thought was a bit above-par with the conditions and the surface spinning a bit. We started quite well though, but then Yuzi (Chahal) bowled really well to get them back in. But for me, the great thing about today once again was our ability to come back to win games out of nowhere. People think that since he (Shahbaz) is a small skinny guy, he can’t hit it long but he can smash it a long way. We didn’t bowl him today because of the wet ball and left-hander being around but he’ll definitely play a long part in this season. Virat is up there (in terms of fitness), I’ll tell that for his fans.
Player of the Match, Dinesh Karthik said:
I think I made a conscious effort this year to do justice to myself because the last year, I felt I could have done better. The way I trained was much better this time around. Credit to the person who trained with me. I’m making a conscious effort to tell myself that I’m not done yet. When I went in, we needed 12 runs per over and had to keep going. I train for these situations. To stay calm and know whom you can take down. I’ve tried to play as much white-ball cricket as possible, and prepare as many scenarios as possible. Lot of people have spent time with me in this journey, leading up to the tournament and it’s the work that goes unnoticed mostly. I think T20 cricket, it’s mostly premeditating but you also need to be clear about where to target.