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Date: 29th April 2015, 8 pm

Venue: M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru

Result: Wash out

It was second time in IPL 2015 that Rajasthan Royals faced the wrath of the Rain Gods. First against KKR and now, against RCB.

However RCB would feel hard done because they did bat first and scored massive 200 runs on their home ground but never got a chance to defend it.

Winning the toss Watson decided to send in RCB to bat first. Given the chance to set a target, RCB started off briskly with Chris Gayle hitting the second and third deliveries of the innings for four and six respectively. But Tim Southee, who was drafted into the RR XI at the expense of Chris Morris, forced the batsman into holing out to the man at square-leg off the fourth delivery. The Kiwi opener struck a blow in his second over when he drew Virat Kohli into a drive and had him caught behind.

AB de Villiers was the innings top-scorer; batting at number three, he played a wide range of shots and took full toll of the loose deliveries dished out by the RR bowlers. He was involved in two useful partnerships; he and Mandeep Singh added 74 runs for the third wicket, after which he and Dinesh Karthik were involved in a stand of 31 runs. The South African brought up 14th IPL half-century in style when he clobbered Stuart Binny for a six over long on. But in the fourteenth over, a mix up with Karthik resulted in his dismissal; he made 57 from 45 balls, aided with nine fours and a six.

With that dismissal it appeared RCB would be robbed of crucial momentum heading into the closing stages of the innings. The dismissal of Karthik in the seventeenth over – courtesy a second run out in the innings – only added to the hosts woes. However, in those difficult situations, emerged a new hero for RCB; 17-year old Sarfaraz Khan, batting for only the second time in the IPL, stole the limelight with some brilliant hitting. He wasn’t afraid to play his shots, and was especially severe on the 43-year old Pravin Tambe, off who he scored 19 runs off seven deliveries. The teenager remained unbeaten on 45 from 21 balls, during which he hit six boundaries and a six.

David Wiese and Harshal Patel together contributed 17 runs from ten deliveries as RCB finished their allotted twenty overs at 200 for 7. There were eleven overs in the RCB innings in which the hosts scored ten runs or more in the over.

Tim Southee was the most successful of the RR bowlers, returning figures of two for 32. Dhawal Kulkarni and Binny were the other wicket-takers.

The skies opened up just as the players were about to take the field prior to the start of the run-chase. After several instances of the skies playing “open and shut” and not allowing the players the opportunity to get on the field, the Umpires – Pashchim Pathak and Johan Cloete, along with Match Referee Ranjan Madugalle, were eventually left with no option but to call off the match.

RR plays MI at Wankhede on 1st May, 2015.

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