IPL 2020, RR VS CSK: Sanju Samson leads RR to 16 run win

Rajasthan Royals have defeated Chennai Super Kings by 16 runs to start their IPL campaign on a winning note. It was a high scoring game with a lot of sixes hit. 416 runs were scored and some bowlers had an unforgettable day.

CSK won the toss and decided to bowl. In Butler’s absence, Smith decided to open the innings with young Jaiswal. After two quiet overs, Jaiswal in trying to get on with game top-edged a short ball got caught and bowled by Chahar. Samson was sent at number three and started to build Royals innings.

After a few nervy moments, both batsmen started to play their shots and put CSK bowlers under pressure. Such was the counter-attack that runs rate touched 9 by end of power play. Royals were placed at 54/1 after 6 overs. From that point, Samsun went in a six-hitting zone and plundered sixes at will as 65 runs came off next 5 overs with Samson completed his fifty off 20 balls. Smith was also hitting boundary here and there but preferred to remain second fiddle to Samson.

At half ways stage, RR were 119/1 with both batsmen well set and CSK totally shell shocked and just did not knew what to do. Samson was in the flow and went after a wide ball in 11th over that led to his downfall as he was out on 74 of 32 balls with 9 half a dozen. Miller was promoted to further up the run rate but he was run out for a diamond duck without facing the ball. In came Uthappa and fell early as RR reached 154/4 at end of 15 overs with Smith who had completed his half-century and was still going strong.

Chawla who was plundered for 47 of his first two overs came back well, post Samson’s wicket, to give away only 8 runs and pick wicket of Uthappa. Tewatia, Parag and Smith fell in quick succession as RR slipped to 178/7 in middle of 19th over and all of a sudden 200 looked a distant possibility. But some mad hitting by Archer in final over bowled by Ngidi (overstepping twice) helped RR get past 200 run mark. Ngidi’s horrifying last over went for 30 runs, Archer scored a cameo of 27 runs of only 8 balls including 4 sixes, helped RR post a formidable score of 216 runs and RR had all the momentum. 

For CSK to chase down one of the openers had to play an innings as Samson did. They would have like to reach 100 in 8 overs but that never happened. Watson looked good for a while but Tewatia cleaned him up to push CSK on backfoot. Vijay followed him soon and CSK were 58/2 in the 8th over. Sam Curran was sent to take on leg spinners but he was stumped by Tewatia and Ruturaj, CSK would have high hopes on him, was dismissed next ball and CSK were tottering at 77/4 in 9 overs. Many anticipated Dhobi to come out but he sent Jadhav ahead of him.

Duplessis and Jadhav started to rebuild but the run rate was had already touched 13 runs/ over and both had a lot of catching to do. Jadhav hit three consecutive boundaries of a Shreyas over but the required run rate was alarmingly increasing which eventually led to his downfall. In came Dhoni with CSK requiring 103 in 36 balls.

Even though the boundaries were short 17 runs/ per was a herculean task with over Jofra’s over remaining. Duplessis started changing gears and started hitting 6s but Dhoni was not still in his elements and required run rate was such that it required some mad hitting from both ends. Duplessis fell in 19th over for 72 of 36 balls but the equation had gone out of control with 38 runs reqd of 6 balls. Dhoni changed his bat and hit three 6s in final over and ensured that done damage control could be done on run rate scenario.

CSK fell short by 16 runs and looking at way innings unfolded Smith was in always control of the proceedings and his bowlers were clinical to give them the first victory. CSK spinners went for 95 runs in 8 overs and took 1 wicket and RR spinners went for 75 runs and took 4 wickets. It can be counted as one difference and also the last over by Ngidi which went for 30 runs when RR did not have any top-order batsman at the crease. Moving forward RR would like to continue the momentum and CSK would like to improve on their bowling and also hope that both openers come good for them soon.