- Glenn Maxwell scored his second half-century of the IPL and led RCB to victory.
- Yuzvendra Chahal and Shahbaz Ahmed picked two wickets each for RCB.
- Mustafizur Rahman grabbed two wickets for 20 runs for RR whereas Evin Lewis with 37-ball scrored 58, and Yashasvi Jaiswal 31.
Royal Challengers Bangalore recorded a dominant seven-wicket victory against Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League here on Wednesday, increasing their chances of finishing in the top two. RCB achieved the task with 17 balls to spare while chasing 150.
Glenn Maxwell, the ace all-rounder, hit an unbeaten 50 off 30 balls, while Srikar Bharat batted cautiously for 44 off 35 deliveries. Following the dismissals of Virat Kohli (25) and Devdutt Padikkal (22), RCB needed 71 runs in the last ten overs.
Kohli and Padikkal got the squad off to a strong start, with RCB scoring nine runs per over on the power play. In the first over, Virat Kohli smashed three boundaries, one of which flew over the slip cordon off a leading edge. After settling down, both were out, with Kohli falling to a stunning direct shot by Riyan Parag after a diving stop.
Earlier, Rajasthan Royals staged an amazing comeback, blowing away a brisk start to finish at 149 for nine. After Rajasthan Royals were cruising at 100 for one in the 11th over, left-arm spinner Shahbaz Ahmed (2/10) and leg-break bowler Yuzvendra Chahal (2/18) triggered the collapse.
Pacer Harshal Patel (3/34) came within an over of completing a hat-trick in successive matches, in the last over, but Kartik Tyagi prevented him as RR lost eight wickets for 49 runs.
Evin Lewis led the way with 58 off 37 balls, although he, like skipper Sanju Samson (19), was guilty of dropping his wicket at a crucial moment. When given first strike, RR batted patiently for two overs until Evin Lewis and Yashasvi Jaiswal (31) decided to cut loose at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
RR were cruising at 39 for no loss at the completion of fourth over, having gone from eight for two in two overs to racing over the fifty-run mark in the following over, with Lewis being the aggressor. Jaiswal smashed Mohammed Siraj through the cover in the opening over of the day, then in the following over, he clobbered Glenn Maxwell for a massive six over far on.
After that, Lewis took charge, blasting debutant English left-arm bowler George Garton for two sixes and a four as RR scored 18 runs off the over. Garton was resuming his attack after being strangely removed despite a very economical first over. Lewis hit another six and a four against Harshal Patel as RR reached fifty in the fifth over.
India pacer Siraj returned to throw a tight sixth over, but Jaiswal hit two boundaries off Daniel Christian to post RR’s greatest opening partnership of the season, despite Kohli’s many bowler switches. Maxwell kept things tight in the following over, allowing only four runs before Jaiswal blasted Christian over extra cover for a maximum.
Christian, on the other hand, had the last laugh when Jaiswal misjudged his timing and failed to clear Siraj at mid-off.
The pitch swung a little early on, but the fast bowlers didn’t gain much traction as the innings unfolded. Lewis continued in the same spirit, hitting Harshal Patel for two consecutive fours before in-form skipper Sanju Samson drove inside out to blast Yuzvendra Chahal over extra over for a six.
Garton, who was bowled by Lewis in his second over, fought back forcefully to extract retribution by having Trinidad’s big-hitter fly one for wicketkeeper Bharat Srikar to complete a high catch. Samson hit Garton over deep square leg for a six, but RR went off the rails after that, the slide continuing with the dismissal of Mahipal Lomror off Chahal.