Pandya and Miller push Titans one step closer to their First Title

New year, New season, new teams, and a winner for this season’s Tata IPL is worth waiting for a couple of matches. This season there was an addition of 2 new teams in the IPL, Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants. Gujarat Titan’s captain Hardik Pandya and Lucknow’s captain Kl Rahul both led their sides to the playoffs in their debut campaign. The Titans faced Rajasthan Royals for Qualifier 1 yesterday, and Lucknow will meet Royal Challengers Bangalore for the Eliminator today.

Hardik Pandya had won the toss for Gujarat Titans and chose to field at Eden Gardens. Yash Dayal managed to get a breakthrough for the Titans by taking the wicket of Yashasvi Jaiswal. After the fall of the wicket, the captain of Rajasthan Royals, Sanju Samson, came onto the pitch. The captain accelerated the innings with a fantastic strike rate of 180.77. He had scored 47 in 26, which uplifted the morale of the batting side. Padikkal’s knock of 28 in 20 didn’t turn the tide for Rajasthan but built the pressure on the bowlers of Gujarat. Gujarat had dropped many catches. Jos Buttler was struggling to time the ball, but after hitting the half-century, he suddenly changed his gears and smashed balls into the stand.

In the final over, Jos Buttler had hit a six but got run out on a no-ball sending him back to the pavilion. On the other hand, Rajasthan was losing wickets as Hetymar and Parag failed to score any boundaries later that night. Rajasthan had Gujarat Titans a target of 189 in 20 overs, which has a pretty good score.

Gujarat’s opener Wriddhiman Saha was sent back to the pavilion after he had nicked the new ball towards Samson, giving the first laugh to Trent Boult for the Royals. 

Matthew Wade had to anchor the innings as Shubman Gill was directing the ball towards the boundaries. Their partnership had given a good and stable start for the batting lineup. After both the batsmen fell, Hardik Pandya and David Miller had turned the show for the Titans as they didn’t lose a wicket in the last 10 overs, building immense pressure on the Royals. Miller had gone unsold on the first day of the mega auction but managed to be a part of Gujarat’s squad. Miller’s explosive 68 in 38 balls had blown Rajasthan’s dream of finals. On the other hand, Pandya had accompanied Miller’s Mayhem for Gujarat. Gujarat had needed 16 in the last over, which was a challenging target, but Miller dispatched 3 consecutive sixes into the crowd had confirmed the Titan’s ticket to the finals. 

Image Credits: iplt20.com

Gujarat Titans had dominated the points table and were the first team to qualify for the playoffs. As they have advanced into the finals, they will compete against the winner of the second qualifier, which will be played on 27th May 2022. Today’s Eliminator between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Lucknow Super Giants will unravel the mystery as to who will advance forward to Qualifier 2. Rashid Khan and Mohammed Shami have been the backbone of the Bowling side. Meanwhile, both the openers have been performing consistently, and Hardik Pandya delivering an all-around performance shows his responsibilities as a captain. Will the Titans be able to lift the first Cup in their Inaugural season? Or Will they bottle up and lose the title to some other Team? Stay Tuned with The Sportsway for more updates.

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