IPL 2018 is reaching its last stage and on Friday, Rajasthan Royals kept their hopes alive with a four-wicket win over Chennai Super Kings. Rajasthan played smart cricket and riding on Jos Buttler’s unbeaten 95 defeated the mighty CSK and are still hanging in the tournament.
5 talking points from Rajasthan’s win:
1. A rare failure for Ambati Rayudu:
Chennai Super Kings in this IPL have relied a lot on Ambati Rayudu and on Friday, Rayudu had a rare failure as he could only score 12 runs and Chennai missed Rayudu’s contribution big time. Ambati Rayudu in this season has given fast starts to Chennai and his partnership with Shane Watson has been one of the reasons for Chennai’s superlative run in the IPL 2018.
2. Watson-Raina partnership:
Australian Shane Watson and Indian Suresh Raina’s game is like chalk and cheese, but against Royals, the duo put up 86 runs and stabilised Chennai’s innings. Watson scored 39 and Raina scored 52 runs. Chennai would have hoped for either one of them to get a big score and take the game away from Rajasthan, but sadly that didn’t materialise.
3. Royals restricting CSK:
At one stage, it looked like Chennai would score above 200 and if that would have happened, the match would have been out of reach for RR. Royals bowlers came back into the game rather well and CSK could only manage 86 runs in the last 10 overs, despite having nine wickets in hand.
4. Buttler’s superman effort:
Jos Buttler continued his good form and struck his fourth consecutive half-century and scored an unbeaten 95 off 60 balls to take Rajasthan Royals home. Buttler as usual attacked in the powerplay and then slowed down in the middle overs. When wickets were falling at the other hand, Buttler kept his composure and batted till the end. The move to open the batting with Buttler has totally paid off and for Royals’ sake, Buttler has to keep his form going.
5. Did Chennai lack intensity?:
CSK are still comfortably sitting in top half of table despite the loss, but there was definitely something missing against RR. First, CSK didn’t finish on a high while batting and also looked lethargic while bowling. Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni will have to address this issues before the knockout matches.