Chasing a target of 213 on a belter of a track in Bengaluru, LSG rode upon sensational half-centuries from Marcus Stoinis and Nicholas Pooran in a game which saw 425 runs being scored in 40 overs.
Asked to take bat first, RCB posted a formidable 212 for two as captain Faf du Plessis, Virat Kohli and Glenn Maxwell smashed imperious half-centuries. However, their scintillating knocks went in vain as it wasn’t enough in the end as RCB suffered yet another defeat at home despite posting 200-plus on the board.
Stoinis-Pooran blitz blanks RCB
Stoinis – the Australian all-rounder who is playing a genuine batter in the side – blasted a 30-ball 65 for LSG after they were reeling at 23 for three in the fourth over.
Then, Pooran smoked 62 off just 19 balls. The left-handed batter from Trinidad & Tobago also became the second fastest batter in the history of IPL to slam a fifty. Pooran notched up his fifty off just 15 balls.
His LSG skipper Rahul – who didn’t have the best of the evening with the bat – holds the record for scoring the fastest fifty of IPL when he took just 14 deliveries in the 2018 season against SRH. Pat Cummins of KKR also smashed a 14-ball 50 in the previous season against MI.
LSG found themselves in a spot of bother after Pooran’s departure but Impact Substitute Ayush Badoni once again showed nerves of steal and scored a quickfire 30 off 24 balls.
With 6 required off nine balls, Badoni played a lap shot off Wayne Parnell and the ball sailed over the third-man region for a six. But unfortunately, Badoni’s bat hit the stumps in the follow-through and he was dismissed hit-wicket.
Last over thriller live up to hype
In the next over, RCB pacer Harshal Patel had to defend 5 off 6 balls – which is always a tough ask in the T20s. Patel clean bowled Mark Wood with a low full-toss for 1. With scores levelled, Jaidev Unadkat tried to play a heroic shot but couldn’t clear it well and Faf du Plessis pouched it at mid-on on the fifth ball of the final over.
Ravi Bishnoi kept his cool and sneaked a single via bye on the last delivery as wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik fumbled and failed to collect the ball on time.
RCB top-three exploits with bat goes in vain
Earlier, RCB were served well by Kohli (61 off 44 balls) and skipper du Plessis (79 off 46 balls) as they shared a 96-run stand for the first wicket in 11.3 overs. Maxwell – the star Australian all-rounder – then smashed his way to 59 in only 29 balls to take RCB’s score past 200.
However, in the hindsight, it seems that RCB – who scored 125 runs in the last 10 overs – could have batted more aggressively in the first 10 overs. That would have given their bowlers some extra runs to defend where 212 isn’t a safe total.
After winning the game, LSG captain Rahul – the local boy – claimed it was an unbelievable game of cricket but admitted that Chinnaswamy is the only venue in the country where so many last-ball finishes are possible.
Unbelievable (performance). This is the Chinnaswamy, the only venue where so many last-ball finishes are possible. From the position we were in, to end up winning it is superb.
We had to go hard and the ball swung early, and they got 2-3 wickets to put the pressure on us. The only reason we got two points today is for the way the lower order batted.”
Pooran who was named the player of the match for his breathtaking knock which was laced with four boundaries and seven maximum. The southpaw admitted that he was confident of chasing down 50 runs in the last four overs.
Reacting to his knock, Pooran said at the post-match presentation, “I want to dedicate this performance to my wife and newborn. We knew that the game was on, and Stoinis and KL had a wonderful partnership. Stoinis kept us in the game and I knew this was a nice wicket. We could chase even over 50 in the last four, it was about cashing in.”
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