Skipper Hardik Pandya scored a gritty half-century to lift Gujarat Titans to a competitive 168 for five against Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League on Thursday.
Coming into the game with a string of low scores, Hardik warmed up nicely for the play-offs with a well-crafted 62 not out off 47 balls even though he was not at his fluent best.
RCB, needing a win to stay alive in the tournament, limited GT to 72 for three in 10 overs, largely due to their brilliance in the field despite Wriddhiman Saha's (31 off 22) threatening stay in the middle.
Saha provided another brisk start with some clean hitting but his opening partner Shubman Gill perished cheaply. The right-hander poked at a good length ball and Glenn Maxwell, standing at a widish first slip, plucked a stunning one-handed catch diving to his right.
Matthew Wade, who has not been at his explosive best in the IPL, fell to a controversial call which also attracted empathy from Virat Kohli. Wade was sure that he underedged a sweep shot off Maxwell and took no time in reviewing the on-field decision, which was out.
However, despite a clear deviation in the ball's trajectory before it thudded on to the pads, the UltraEdge did not detect it and the TV umpire stayed with the on-field umpire's call. Wade had no choice but to grudgingly walk back into the dugout.
Saha, who hit four boundaries and a six, had Hardik for the company in the middle but following a mix-up with his captain, the wicketkeeper fell way short of his crease when Faf du Plessis came up with a stunning direct hit from mid-off.
Hardik, who was dropped on 14, made it count alongside David Miller (34 off 25), who continued his impressive run in the tournament.
Miller smashed three sixes before Wanindu Hasaranga got rid of him with a sharp return catch.
Rashid Khan (19 not out off six) joined Hardik in the death overs and did what he has done over the course of the season. The leg-spinner whacked couple of sixes towards the end to push the total past 160.
GT scored 50 runs out of the last five overs.