IPL 2022, GT vs RR, Top Performances: Hardik Pandya's 87*, Lockie Ferguson's 3-23 and Jos Buttler's 54 are the top performances.
Brief Scores: Gujarat Titans 192-4 (Pandya 87*, Manohar 43, Chahal 1-32) beat Rajasthan Royals 155-9 (Buttler 54, Hetmyer 29, Ferguson 3-23) by 37 runs
Player of the match – Hardik Pandya (87*, 1/18, 1 run-out, 1 Catch)
The table-toppers Rajasthan Royals (RR) were up against Gujarat Titans (GT) in the 24th game of the TATA IPL 2022 at the Dr DY Patil Sports Academy in Navi Mumbai on Thursday. Gujarat were playing to snatch the table-topper position from Rajasthan. While RR where looking to hand Gujarat their second loss of the season.
After winning the toss, RR captain Sanju Samson opted to field first on a track which looked like a belter of wicket for the batters. Gujarat went into this match with two changes, debutant Yash Dayal came in for Darshan Nalkande and Vijay Shankar regained his place after injury swapping Sai Sudharsan. Rajasthan made one forced change as Trent Boult was out after sustaining an injury and was replaced by his compatriot Jimmy Neesham.
Gujarat Titans regain table-topper position
Gujarat dethroned Rajasthan from the top of points table and became the first team to garner eight points.
After deciding to bowl first, RR had a brilliant by dismissing both the openers within the first three overs. After Gill was dismissed, GT were in a spot of bother at 53-3 inside 7 overs. Hardik Pandya and Abhinav Manohar battled out the difficult phase with sensible batting in the middle overs and the latter taking the odd calculated risk. The well-settled Hardik went bonkers in the death overs along with David Miller where they accumulated 53 runs in just 25 balls to help Gujarat Titans to 192-4.
Jos Buttler took Rajasthan off to a flyer with his quickfire 54 runs and RR were cruising towards the total at one point with 65 runs from just 6 overs. The Kiwi quick Ferguson then swung the match in GT’s favour with two quick wickets in the same over, dismissing the dangerous Buttler and Ravichandran Ashwin who was sent as a pinch-hitter at number three.
RR never recovered from the Buttler dismissal and neither did GT allow Rajasthan to come back into the game by picking wickets at regular intervals and won comfortably in the end by 37 runs to jump to the first position from fifth in the points table.
Let’s walk through the top three impactful performance from the game between GT and RR
Hardik-Manohar 86-run partnership
After losing quick early wickets, Gujarat Titans were struggling at 53-3 at the seven over mark. Their captain, Hardik Pandya had a huge responsibility on his shoulders in terms of taking his team to a respectable total from this terrible situation. A steady and sensible innings was needed under pressure from the captain. Hardik and Manohar played perfectly as per the situation finding the gaps, running the ones and the twos and manufacturing the odd boundaries here and there initially. Gujarat were striking still just above 7 runs per over until the 12th over by then as Rajasthan who have the best bowling lineup in this year’s IPL, weren’t giving any lose balls for the duo to capitalise on.
Hardik and Manohar took the charge to the bowlers after the 12th over, where Manohar welcomed leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal to the new spell with a boundary and brilliantly lofted an inside out six over the cover boundaries off consecutive balls. The new and responsible captain, Hardik Pandya collected his first-ever back-to-back fifties in IPL. The real Hardik came to the show when Ashwin came on to bowl; Pandya slogged the Indian veteran for back-to-back sixes over the mid-wicket boundary swinging the momentum in Gujarat’s favour.
Abhinav Manohar also tried to up the ante by hitting a slog sweep six over mid-wicket. He tried to repeat the same but Chahal had the last laugh and the ship-steadying or rather a match-winning partnership of 86 runs came to an end. With this knock of 87*, Hardik overtook Jos Buttler and was donning the orange cap just for a brief period.
Jos’ “butterfly” innings
Chasing a mammoth total of 193 runs, Rajasthan needed to get off to a flyer, and Jos Buttler put the pedal on the gas right from the word go, smacking the experienced new ball bowler Mohammed Shami for 13 runs in the very first over of the run chase. Buttler was in no mood to let anyone even blink their eyes as he took debutant Yash Dayal to the cleaners with 14 runs off his first four balls in IPL, including a premeditated scoop six over fine leg and giving the youngster some taste of what’s to come at this level.
Even after his opening partner, Devdutt Padikkal was dismissed, Buttler wasn’t going to mourn over his wicket, instead he took the revenge of his partner’s wicket by smacking 18 runs off Dayal’s second over. Dayal tried to dig it short but Jos smashed a 84 metre huge six over deep mid wicket off a pull shot which was right off the meat of the blade.
Buttler hit his second fifty of the season in just 23 balls with this one coming inside the batting powerplay. Buttler took the shine off the new ball smacking 52 off 24 balls which included three sixes and eight boundaries. Till the time Buttler was there at the crease, the total of 193 looked like a mere 120 runs.
Lockie Ferguson’s fiery spell
While Jos Buttler was going berserk at the other end, Hardik Pandya called his premier wicket taker of this season Lockie Ferguson in search of a wicket and he didn’t disappoint the GT captain. He dismissed pinch-hitter Ashwin off the very first ball of his spell and then cleaned up Buttler with a well-disguised slower yorker. Even the well-settled Buttler couldn’t pick the variation of Ferguson and was clean bowled.
Ferguson, with his tail up, was lethal and was consistently bowling above 145 clicks and RR batters were having a hard time to even see the balls out of the Kiwi pacer’s hand. Coming back for his final spell to put the final nail on the coffin, Ferguson dismissed Riyan Parag off a full toss from the last ball of his third over. Ferguson ended the match with three wickets in his bag giving away just 23 runs in his fast and fiery spell.
IPL 2022 Points Table
What’s to come
The two-times IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will take on one-time winner Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai on April 15.
Here are some of the top twitter reactions from GT vs RR game, TATA IPL 2022: