Kartik Tyagi of Rajasthan Royals celebrates the wicket of Fabian Allen of Punjab Kings in the final over during their IPL match at the Dubai International Stadium on Tuesday. Courtesy: IPL website
Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter
Kartik Tyagi bowled an eventful last over as Rajasthan Royals snatched a victory from the jaws of defeat against Punjab Kings in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match on Tuesday.
After posting a huge total of 185, Rajasthan restricted Punjab to 183/4 to eke out a thrilling two-run victory off the last ball.
Punjab dominated the game throughout the chase after KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal had set the tone with a century partnership.
After the departure of Agrawal and Rahul, Aiden Markam and Nicholas Pooran took the charge in their hands.
Both played sensibly and took the score to 183/2 in 19 overs, bringing the equation down to four needed off last six balls with eight wicket hands.
Pooran scored a quick-fire 22-ball 32 while Markam was more patient, scoring 26 off 20 deliveries. Almost everyone had written Rajasthan off, but Tyagi had different plans when he came to bowl the last over. He refused to give up.
Tyagi bowled a dot ball to Markam and gave a single on the next delivery which brought Pooran on the strike. Tyagi had West Indian caught by Sanju Samson off the third ball.
Deepak Hooda failed to get off the mark and holed out to Samson on the penultimate ball of the final over.
Fabian Allen could not absorb the pressure and failed to take any run off the last ball as Rajasthan finished the romp.
Earlier, Rahul and Agarwal shared a 120-run stand for the first wicket as Punjab looked to be cruising to a facile win.
Rajasthan were off to a flying start as the opening pair of Yashasvi Jaiswal and Evin Lewis laid down a solid foundation with a 54-run opening wicket partnership in the first powerplay.
Rajasthan were playing without their stars like Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Jos Buttler. In the absence of the top three, the onus of putting up a good total fell on the shoulder of Liam Livingstone and Lewis.
As expected, Lewis opened the innings with Jaiswal. The duo unleashed the attack on the Punjab bowlers from the beginning to dominate the proceedings.
Jaiswal made his intents clear as he hit two consecutive boundaries off the last two deliveries of Shami’s first over.
Ishan Porel was taken for a ride as he gave away 26 runs from his first two overs. Lewis hit him for a six off the last ball of his first over.
Shami controlled the damage by conceding just five runs in his next over. In the second over of Porel, Lewis hit four boundaries to mount the pressure on Punjab.
Lewis lived up to his reputation of a hard-hitting batsman as he smashed a quick-fire 21-ball 36 with the help of seven fours and one six.
Arshdeep Singh gave Punjab the first breakthrough as he got rid of the dangerman. Lewis holed out to Agarwal in the extra cover while trying to play a mistimed inside out shot.
Sanju Samson failed to capitalise on the good start and threw away his wicket. He was caught by his Punjab counterpart Lokesh Rahul while trying to slice it over the third-man.
Jaiswal and Livingstone shared a 48-run stand for the third wicket and took the score past 100. Arshdeep struck again and broke the partnership as he sent Livingstone back to the pavilion.
After the departure of Livingstone, Rajasthan kept on losing the wickets at regular intervals. Harpreet Brarr dismissed Jaiswal when he was just one short of his fifty.
Jaiswal’s dismissal opened the flood gates for Shami, who ripped through the lower order as Rajasthan lost four wickets in quick succession. Shami had Riyan Parag caught by Markarm and rattled the stumps of Rahul Tewatia before sending Chris Morris back.
Meanwhile, Arshdeep also got rid of Mahipal Lomror, who smacked a blitzkrieg 17-ball 46 to propel the score to 169 in 17 overs. Lomror was in a devastating mood as he plundered 24 runs off 16th over bowled by Hooda.
Rajasthan looked set to breach 200-run mark when Lomror was at the crease. Punjab heaved a sigh of relief when Arshdeep picked his third wicket to dismiss the dangerman.
After Shami ran through the lower order, Arshdeep wiped out the tail, picking up the last two wickets. He caught Chetan Sakariya off his own bowling and uprooted the stumps of Kartik Tyagi as Rajasthan finished on 185 all out in their 20 overs.
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