11th May 2014
The Grand Oz Heist
190 + 191 = 381 runs were scored as Rajasthan Royals steal the show! Smith, Faulkner win it from RCB at Chinnaswamy.
In search of a win following five losses in six games, Virat Kohli went out of his comfort zone and chose to bat against Rajasthan Royals. Before this match, Kohli had won six tosses this season and each time, he had preferred to chase. Shane Watson thanked Kohli and said he would have bowled anyway.
Royal Challengers persisted with Yuvraj Singh, who has made 144 runs in eight innings at a strike-rate of 102.12. They gave an IPL debut to India Under-19 captain Vijay Zol in place of Sachin Rana and went for Ashok Dinda over Harshal Patel, who had gone for 56 runs in three overs in their previous match against Kings XI Punjab.
And Yuvraj Singh did not disappoint this time! He scored 83 from just 38 balls hitting 7 FOURS & 7 SIXES each at the SR of 218.42. Skipper Virat Kohli got out in the third over trying to hit a wide delivery to the third man. Rajat Bhatia making no mistake took a simple catch sending Kohli back with just 4 runs. Chris Gayle too failed to make a mark again. Scoring 19 runs from 25 balls clearly showed he wasn't at his best making it good RR. Only until AB and Yuvi unleashed their power! Together they scored 132 runs from 65 balls making it a painful affair for RR bowlers. There was no stopping for these 'Men in Red' as they scored 133 runs in 10 overs.
Royals went for the same combination, bringing in Rahul Tewatia for his second game of the season ahead of Dhawal Kulkarni. And as it would have been, Tewatia was the most economical bowler for the team giving away 17 runs from 3 overs picking up 1 wicket. Though Kane Richardson picked up 2 wickets, he was smothered by RCB batsmen for 43 runs from his 4 overs. With 190 runs to score, RR started well. Ajinkya Rahane and Karun Nair gave a solid start to the team scoring 24 and 56 runs respectively. However, Binny and skipper Watson failed to keep the momentum going and the tension was clearly seen on the face of the Royal Mentor Rahul Dravid. And when Sanju Samson also failed to make it big for the team, it was almost over. But Faulkner had something else in his mind. Together with hard-hitter Smith, they just made it look too easy!
Just to remind everyone: James Faulkner - The last time he played in Bangalore, he scored the fastest ODI hundred for an Australian.
RR needed 83 runs from 6 overs to win the game when Steve Smith & James Faulkner were on the crease. And what happened next is just the dream!
The Aussies went berserk and it was mayhem at the stadium. 14, 4, 21, 23, 21 - that's how they scored winning it for RR with 7 balls to spare. For all the fans who saw these overs, it will be the most memorable batting experience for Pepsi IPL 2014.
"I don't know about bowling, the last two time I have played here I have been smacked all over the place," says James Faulkner, the Man of the Match.