Rahul Tewatia and Riyan Parag stole a sensational win from right under the nose of Sunrisers Hyderabad on Sunday. The five-wicket victory, with a ball to spare, at the Dubai International Stadium finally brought an end to the terrible run for Rajasthan Royals, which had come into the match after losing its last four.
On a surface where stroke-making didn’t seem easy, the target of 159 set by Sunrisers, after opting to bat, looked distant for Royals when its top-order crumbled again. The ploy to promote Ben Stokes — playing his first IPL game of the season — didn’t work as he chopped Khaleel Ahmed on to the stumps.
Skipper Steve Smith’s hesitation while going for a second run for Jos Buttler ended in his run-out. A couple of balls later, Buttler followed Smith to the dug-out, edging Khaleel behind.
In dire straits
Then Rashid Khan sent back Sanju Samson (26) and Robin Uthappa. At 78 for five, Royals was in dire straits. Another 81 was needed off eight overs when Tewatia (45 not out, 28b, 4×4, 2×6) joined Parag (42 not out, 26b, 2×4, 2×6). They were not separated till the winning shot came — a six by the teenager over cover off Khaleel.
It was splendid batting from Tewatia — whose stunning knock against KXIP had given Royals its first win a fortnight ago — and Parag.
Earlier, Sunrisers was restricted by another excellent spell from Jofra Archer. But it was young seamer Kartik Tyagi who broke the opening partnership between Warner and Jonny Bairstow.
The Englishman’s attempt to hit a second straight six failed as Samson came up with a brilliant diving catch, timing his run towards his left from deep square-leg to perfection.
Warner then added 73 for the second wicket with Manish Pandey (54, 44b, 2×4, 3×6) before Archer cleaned up the opener with a fast, fuller, straighter delivery. Kane Williams and Priyam Garg scored 35 off the last two overs to lend respectability to the SRH total. However, Parag and Tewatia had other ideas.