Rajasthan Royals captain, Sanju Samson played one of the greatest IPL innings ever but still ended on the losing side.
His brilliant 119 couldn’t prevent Punjab Kings from beating RR by four runs in a last-ball thriller.
RR won the toss and put Punjab Kings in to bat.
It looked like the wrong decision as Punjab Kings made a mammoth 221-6 with skipper KL Rahul leading the way with 91 off 50 balls.
Gayle contributed a quick-fire 40 but it was Deepak Hooda’s savage 64 off just 28 balls that stole the limelight.
Hooda smashed 4 fours and 6 sixes in his whirlwind innings.
IPL 2021 has seen many young Indian batsmen grabbing the headlines with their exploits and Hooda is one more example of the same trend.
For RR, IPL debutant Chetan Sakariya was the pick of the bowlers.
He managed the first breakthrough by getting rid of Mayank Agarwal and finished with three wickets for 31 runs in four overs.
Bad beginning by Royals
RR had got off to a terrible start, losing their key all-rounder Ben Stokes to Mohammed Shami in the first over.
The other opener, Manan Vohra was caught and bowled by Arshdeep Singh, leaving RR at 25 for two in the fourth over.
The match would have been over much before, had it not been for Sanju Samson.
Samson top-scored with 119 from 63 balls with 12 fours and 7 sixes.
He compiled half-century partnerships with Shivam Dube and Riyan Parag and also added 45 runs with Jos Buttler to keep RR in the hunt.
For the Kings, Shami and Arshdeep were commendable, picking up 2 and 3 wickets respectively and conceding just 68 from their 8 overs.
The Australian bowling pair of Riley Meredith and Jhye Richardson found it hard to adjust and went for plenty of runs.
Meredith picked up 1 wicket for 49 and Richardson got 1 wicket for 55 runs.
Samson’s explosive batting reduced the equation down to 5 runs off two balls.
He refused to take a run in the fifth ball, hoping to hit a six in the last ball.
But Arshdeep, who was bowling the last over, held his cool and made Samson hole out to deep extra cover.
Though RR lost the match, the batting of Samson and the bowling of Chetan Sakariya were the bright spots.
Punjab Kings 221 for 6 (Rahul 91, Hooda 64, Gayle 40, Sakariya 3-31) beat Rajasthan Royals 217 for 7 (Samson 119, Arshdeep 3-35) by four runs