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A maiden century at his home ground was not enough as Yashasvi Jaiswal’s heroics couldn’t stop Rajasthan Royals from losing to Mumbai Indians in the 1000th Indian Premier League match at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Having posted a massive 212/7 batting first, the Royals endured a difficult time on the field with the five-time champions chasing down the target with three balls to spare to record the highest successful run chase in the IPL at the venue.

Jaiswal was undoubtedly the star of the evening and meant business from the opening over, taking Cameron Green to the stands in the fourth ball. His innings oozed class as he craved out space where none existed and hammered in some mean shots to bring up his first-ever century in the IPL. His innings was laced with 16 boundaries and eight maximums as the young Royal single-handedly took his side to a handsome total.

In reply, the Mumbai Indians took on the challenge and put up a respectable fight with Green (44) and Suryakumar Yadav (55) leading the charge. Though R Ashwin (2-27) and Sandeep Sharma (1-35) made life difficult for the hosts, a late flourish from Tim David (45*), which included three sixes in the final over of the match, helped them to a memorable win.

The loss sees the Royals drop to the third spot in the IPL 2023 points table with 10 points from nine matches while Mumbai Indians seem to have found a glimmer of hope and are up to the seventh spot with eight points from as many games.

Just Jaiswal things

In a season where he’s taken the responsibility of scoring big and scoring quickly from his senior partner, Jos Buttler, Jaiswal has grown from strength to strength in IPL 2023. If he was left disappointed after a blistering 77 against the Chennai Super Kings – his highest score in the league back then – the other night, the 21-year-old was determined not to have any hiccups against the Mumbai Indians. 

Having announced his intentions with the opening over six, there was no looking back for Jaiswal as the Mumbai local entertained the capacity crowd at the Wankhede with some delightful batting. Though Rohit Sharma tried various combinations to halt the man who grew up playing his cricket at the maidans of Mumbai, nothing stood in his way as Jaiswal celebrated a landmark achievement in his signature fashion. 

What stood out about the innings was the composed manner in which Jaiswal went about his business. Even with the likes of Buttler, Sanju Samson, Shimron Hetmyer and Devdutt Padikkal falling by the wayside, nothing seemed to bother him as he did the bulk of the scoring for the Men in Pink. For a man who likes to keep things simple and bank on his preparations, the first-ever IPL century was no different. “I was thinking right, planning right and hitting the right shots. I have practised all the shots that I want to play. Every time I hold a bat, be it in the nets or the match, I feel the same way,” said the Orange Cap holder speaking to the broadcasters post his knock.

Ashwin shows restraint

Defending a comfortable total, the Royals made sure that they didn’t allow the Mumbai Indians any loose ones with both Trent Boult and Sharma keeping things tight in the Powerplay overs. The 29-year-old Sharma was impressive with his variations and even outfoxed Rohit Sharma to knock off his bails in the second over. 

Later, once Ashwin came into the act, scoring became difficult for the MI batters with the Indian international using all his experience to keep his opponents in check. The off-spinner’s persistence paid off as he dismissed both Ishan Kishan and a dangerous-looking Green to complete 300 wickets in T20s, only the second Indian to do so behind his spin twin Yuzvendra Chahal.

But with Suryakumar coming in and skipper Samson bowling out Ashwin by the midway stage, the hosts counterattacked well to take the match deep for Tim David to win it for them with some power hitting in the final over.