The Qualifier 2 clash was set to occur at the brand new Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. Qualifier 2 is played between the loser of qualifier one and the winner of the Eliminator. After two games in Kolkata, the two teams set to lock horns in this encounter were Rajasthan Royals, the loser of Qualifier 1, and Royal Challengers Bangalore, the winner of the Eliminator.
The toss took place at the usual 7 pm, and Rajasthan Royals Skipper Sanju Samson won the toss and opted to bowl first. Funny enough, this toss win was just his 4th win out of 16 games of this season. At the toss, RCB skipper Faf Du Plessis after losing the toss, said, “We always wanted to bat first as this looks like a fresh wicket, and runs on the board in a big game like this will be helpful for us”. Both teams went into this game unchanged from their previous playoff encounters.
1st Innings: Prasidh Krishna Redemption
The innings started off with RCB openers Faf Du Plessis and Virat Kohli walking out to open the innings, but soon Virat pocked one outside the off to Prasidh Krishna and was out in the second over itself. Faf Du Plessis and centurion from the last game, Rajat Patidar, started rebuilding RCB innings. At the end of powerplay (6 overs), RCB was 45/1. RR spinners came in after the powerplay, but Rajat Patidar was in no mood to show them any respect and straightway started his counterattack against them. By the end of the first half of the first innings, RCB looked in complete control of their innings and was set to explode in the second half. Then came a new middle overs hero for Men in Pink, their West Indian tall man, Obed McCoy, who struck with slow outside off delivery, and RCB skipper Faf Du Plessis was dismissed.
The Big Show (Maxwell) joined Rajat Patidar, and both again started taking on RR spin twins, Ashwin-Chahal. Maxwell smacked the current purple cap holder all the park in one over. Seeing his spin twins being ineffective, captain Samson brought on Trent Boult in the 13th over, which indeed turned out to be a masterstroke as Boult sent Maxwell back to the pavilion in the same over. Patidar continued his form and carried on for RCB. After scoring Hundred in the last playoff match (Eliminator), Patidar reached his fifty in style by hitting a huge six over long-off, that too of the most in-form bowler of the tournament Yuvzendra Chahal. But in the very next over, Ashwin got rid of dangerous Patidar for a well-made 58 from 42 balls, and by the end of 16 overs, RCB were 132/4.
With just four overs to go and Dinesh Karthik in the middle, everyone expected some fireworks but sadly, nothing sorts of such happened. Obed McCoy and Prasidh Krishna delivered excellent four overs for RR. Prasidh Krishna, after getting smacked for three back-to-back sixes in one over in Qualifier 1, bounced back beautifully. He bowled an outstanding spell (4-0-22-3) in this match. He dismissed Dinesh Karthik and Hasaranga in back-to-back deliveries in the 19th over, killing all hopes of RCB for a significant flourish in the end. The Royal Challengers Bangalore finished with a score of 157/8 after their 20 overs.
2nd Innings: Jos The Boss Show
After winning the toss and restricting Royal Challengers Bangalore under 160, Rajasthan Royals had the best chance to play their 2nd final in 14 seasons. RR openers Jos Buttler and Yashasvi Jaiswal started off on the 5th gear itself and just took apart RCB’s new-ball bowlers. Young Jaiswal showed no mercy to experienced senior pros like Siraj and smacked him for 16 runs in the first over itself. That 1st over set the momentum for the match, and RR openers never looked back then. Rajasthan Royals were 60 in just five overs. But then, finally, Josh Hazelwood sends Jaiswal back on the hunt.
Captain Sanju Samson joined Jos Buttler, and both of them smoothly sailed RR through the middle overs patch taking on the RCB spinners. At the ten overs mark, only 55 more were needed for RR, with Buttler still out there smashing everyone apart. Soon, Hasaranga tricked Samson with a googly, but ,it was too late for Men in Red by then. Buttler continued his usual business and soon brought up his 4th Ton of this season in TATA IPL 2022. Jos Buttler finished it in his own style in the 19th over by smashing six of Harshal Patel. Thanks to Jos Buttler with bat and Prasidh Krishna and Obed McCoy with ball
Rajasthan Royals have booked their re-match with the Gujarat Titans in the finals of TATA IPL 2022. Stay Tuned with The Sportsway for more updates.