Rajasthan Royals End Royal Challengers Bengaluru’s Dream Run In IPL 2024 With Four-Wicket Win


PTI, May 23, 2024, 8:12 AM IST

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Rajasthan Royals ended Royal Challengers Bengaluru’s roller coaster run in the Indian Premier League with a scratchy four-wicket win in the Eliminator in Ahmedabad on Wednesday.

After their bowlers had done their part well to keep RCB to 172/8, RR batters stuttered in the middle overs to allow RCB back into the contest which remained hung in balance for the majority of the second half, but the 2008 winners eventually got home with an over to spare. Chasing 173, Rajasthan ended with 174/6 as Rovman Powell (16 not out) provided the finishing touches in a tense finish.

As he has done several times before this season, Riyan Parag (36 off 26) showcased deep resolve in an adverse situation to help Rajasthan stay alive in the tournament. It was Royals’ first win after four losses and an abandoned game.

2008 winners Royals face Sunrisers Hyderabad in Chennai on Friday for a place in the IPL final.

The returning Shimron Hetmyer also played his part to perfection, scoring a crucial 26 off 14 balls.

In a contest wherein fortunes swung from one side to another, RR remained ahead with impactful performances throughout even though Mohammed Siraj (2/33) raised late hopes for RCB with wickets of Parag and Hetmyer in the 18th over, With 13 needed off last two overs, Powell found two fours off Lockie Ferguson to seal the deal in favour of his side.

Earlier, it was Yashasvi Jaiswal (45 off 30) who gave them the impetus at the top.

Off to an unconvincing start with his initial runs coming off the outside edge, Jaiswal grew in confidence when Yash Dayal fed him a few deliveries to capitalise on and the RR opener cracked four fours in the third over to break the shackles.

At the other end, Tom Kohler-Cadmore (20) also hit a couple of fours against Siraj and while getting a lifeline from Glenn Maxwell, who spilled a sitter at deep square leg off Dayal.

With RR’s acceleration rapidly shaving runs off the target, RCB needed a breakthrough and Lockie Ferguson provided the first success when he foxed Kohler-Cadmore with a slow yorker which crashed into the stumps.

The gradual progression of Jaiswal’s innings saw the batter finding his rhythm, but the extreme heat sapped him out completely having faced a mere 29 balls.

In between the ninth and the 10th over, Jaiswal received on-field treatment and got back up only to play a loose shot – an attempted ramp off Cameron Green but only gloved it to the ‘keeper.

Soon after, Karn Sharma dealt a body blow by having Sanju Samson (17) stumped.

With their tails up, RCB continued making inroads with Dhruv Jurel (8) being run out after a brilliant effort from Virat Kohli and Cameron Green. Kohli fired a sharp throw from deep midwicket to the non-striker’s end, where Jurel was found short of his crease.

RR were firmly under pressure heading into the 15th over when they chose to go after Green, who had been all over them with three tidy overs and a wicket up until then.

Hetmyer smacked the Australian for a six and Parag followed his partner in hitting another, while also finding a four to collect 17 runs.

Earlier, Rajasthan Royals put forth a sharp bowling effort.

Led by Trent Boult (4-0-16-1), who produced an opening spell of 3-0-6-1, RR bowlers kept taking wickets at crucial stages to control the game.

The venerable Ravichandran Ashwin (4-0-19-2), having previously gone wicketless for a significant stretch, left an indelible mark with wickets Cameron Green (27) and Glenn Maxwell (0) on consecutive deliveries while Avesh Khan (3/44) also chipped in.

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Rajasthan’s bowling was adequately backed up by their fielders, particularly Rovman Powell, who took two stunning catches that clipped RCB’s progress.

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