It was the Rajasthan Royals (RR) against the Mumbai Indians (MI) in the 9th game of Tata IPL 2022. MI came into the match with a loss, while RR had registered a victory against SRH in their first game. The buzzing encounter saw the first hundred of IPL 2022 coming from the bat of Jos Buttler as RR beat MI by 23 runs.

Here’s how the contest unfolded between the two teams.

Who won the toss?

The toss was won by MI, who chose to bowl first on a batting-friendly track. Rohit went into the game with an unchanged team, and RR replaced Nathan Coulter-Nile with Navdeep Saini.

MI vs RR 1st Innings Highlights

Put into bat by Rohit Sharma, RR had a slightly shaky start. Though Jos Buttler hit a four and a six to begin the proceedings, they lost Yashasvi Jaiswal cheaply in the third over. The left-hander was dismissed for 1 by Jasprit Bumrah, and Devdutt Padikkal made way to the middle. RR were 13-1 in 2.4 overs.

Jos Buttler showed his class in the third over of the innings, hitting Basil Thampi for 26 runs. The showdown included three sixes and two boundaries taking RR to 43-1 in 4 overs. One of the sixes was 101 meters long. Murugan Ashwin applied brakes to the run flow and gave only 4 runs in the next over.

The fifth over, bowled by Tymal Mills, saw another one going down for RR. Padikkal was out caught at covers by Rohit Sharma. At the end of the powerplay, RR were 48-2 with Jos Buttler and Sanju Samson at the crease.

Buttler looked in exquisite touch as he continued smashing the ball after the powerplay. In the eight over by Daniel Sams, he struck 2 fours in a row to bring up his half-century off just 32 balls. Out of the 66 runs scored in 8 overs, 52 came from the bat of the Englishman.

The tenth over of the innings saw Sanju Samson opening his arms as he smashed a massive six past the mid-wicket fence. In a sudden change of gears owing to some poor bowling from Murugan Ashwin, RR scored 21 runs off the 11th over. Both Samson and Buttler smashed a six each off the leg spinner.

After 11 overs, RR were 108-2. Almost every over comprised sixes and boundaries thanks to the power-hitting prowess of Samson and Buttler. They were toying with the field and were fearless in their approach. Rohit Sharma brought Jasprit Bumrah for another over in search of a breakthrough. Though the pacer stopped the flow of runs, he couldn’t get a wicket.

However, to everyone’s surprise, it was Kieron Pollard who hurdled Sanju Samson, who was caught at midwicket by Tilak Varma. A partnership of 82 runs came to an end with the departure of the Rajasthan skipper.

RR were 138-3 after 15 overs, and Shemron Hetmyer had joined Buttler in the middle. The 16th over by Daniel Sams went for only six runs, and MI seemed to be getting back into the game.

With a set Buttler and the six-machine in Hetmyer at the crease, an explosion awaited the men in blue. A six over square leg, another over mid-wicket, followed by two consecutive fours were the highlights of the 17th over by Kieron Pollard. The man smashing him was none other than Shemron Hetmyer, another West Indian.

Hetmyer seemed set as he further bamboozled the next over by Tymal Mills for a six and a four. Buttler completed his first century of IPL 2022 in the 19th over of the innings with a single off Bumrah. The same over saw both the set batsmen getting out. While Hetmyer holed out to Tilak Varma at deep mid-wicket, Buttler became a victim of an astonishing yorker by Bumrah.

Another wicket fell in the same over as R. Ashwin was run out by Tilak Varma while trying to steal a double from the deep point fielder. RR were down to 185-6 in 19 overs. Rohit gave Tymal Mills the responsibility to bowl the final over, and he didn’t disappoint.

Mills gave only 8 runs and scalped two wickets, including Navdeep Saini and Riyan Parag. The Rajasthan Royals finished with a total of 193-8. It is interesting to note that the last 12 balls went only for 11 runs, thanks to disciplined bowling by Bumrah and Mills.

MI vs RR 2nd Innings Highlights

As Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan made their way to the middle, MI eyed a successful run chase. A boundary from Kishan got the ball rolling, and a maximum in the second over by Rohit Sharma indicated his form.

But in a change of fortune, the MI skipper was dismissed in the same over by Prasidh Krishna. Sharma was caught at point despite a prolifically timed shot. After the first two overs, Mumbai were 19-1.

Another happening over came from Navdeep Saini, in which Kishan smashed 15 off the first 3 balls, but the quickie made a comeback and got rid of Anmolpreet Singh (5), taking the MI total to 40-2 after 4 overs.

The RR bowlers upped the ante and built pressure on MI, who tried to rebuild with Kishan and Tilak Varma at the crease. The latter smashed R. Ashwin for a flat six as Mumbai reached 61-2 after 7 overs. He later targeted Navdeep Saini, hitting him for a six and a boundary.

Tilak Varma proved his mettle by smashing Chahal for a maximum and a four in the 10th over, taking his team’s score to 94-2 after 10 overs. Meanwhile, Ishan Kishan was having a tough time middling the ball and finding the fence. Jaiswal dropped him on the square leg boundary in what could have been the catch of the season.

The youngster, Tilak Varma, smashed Riyan Parag for a maximum over long-off, hitting the cameraman in the process. The struggling Kishan completed his fifty in the thirteenth over and got dismissed in the same. He was caught by Navdeep Saini at square leg for 54 off 43 balls.

Soon, Tilak also reached his half-century, and MI were 129-3 after 14 overs, requiring 65 off 36 balls. The youngster launched R. Ashwin over the square leg boundary with a reverse sweep. But the experienced Indian spinner came back strongly and dismissed him on the very next ball.

In a significant turn of events, Yuzvendra Chahal took two wickets in two balls to send Tim David and Daniel Sams back into the dugout. The leg spinner could have got a hat trick had Karun Nair not dropped Murugan Ashwin.

His fine over brought MI down to 137-6 in 16 overs. Pollard was at the crease, and the MI fans were assured of a special innings from him. On the contrary, the big man looked rusty, getting off the mark on the eight ball. He was clearly struggling to even get bat on ball, and what seemed a gettable target diverged from MI’s hands as they needed 39 off 12 balls.

Prasidh Krishna was under immense pressure bowling the 19th over of the innings, but the youngster managed to keep it down to 10 runs. Murugan Ashwin was run out of a no-ball in his over. Despite a horrendous outing from Pollard, people hoped for a miracle in the final six balls when MI needed 29 runs to win.

Navdeep Saini had the ball and Pollard was on strike in a battle of nerves. The first delivery was a wide, and the next one was hit for a boundary. However, Saini bowled four dot balls on the trot and dismissed Pollard on the final ball to take his team over the line by 23 runs.

Best Performance for RR

Jos Buttler turned heads with a blistering hundred for the Rajasthan Royals. He scored 100 off 68 balls to become the Man of the Match.

Yuzvendra Chahal took 2 wickets, giving away only 26 runs in his quota of 4 overs. He was the best bowler for RR.

Best Performance for MI

In the batting department, Tilak Varma scored 61 off 33 balls, hitting 5 sixes and 3 fours.
Jasprit Bumrah’s brilliance was on display as the pacer took 3 wickets for just 17 runs in 4 overs.

MI vs RR Interesting Moments

Tilak Hits the Cameraman

Tilak Varma, the left-hander from MI, smashed a six off the 5th ball of the 12th over. However, the maximum from him over long-off landed on a Cameraman’s head, stationed just behind the hoardings with his equipment.

Watch the video of the incident here.

Nervous Buttler

Buttler had reached 83 off 52 balls. However, he took 16 balls to score the next 17 runs in the quest for a century.

Ishan’s fifth fifty in 5 matches

As I had mentioned in the pre-match blog, Ishan Kishan came into this match with 4 fifties in 4 IPL games. He continued his dream run with a half-century against RR, making it five in five.

The trio of Buttler, Samson, and Hetmyer

Out of the 193 runs scored by RR, 165 came from the willows of Jos Buttler (100), Sanju Samson (30), and Shimron Hetmyer (35). The other 6 batters scored only 28.

Bumrah: The Yorker King

After a poor first game, Jasprit Bumrah made a comeback against RR. He finished with figures of 4-0-17-3. In the 19th over of the RR innings, Bumrah bowled 4 swashbuckling yorkers and fetched two wickets.

Buttler’s Flying Catch

Jos Buttler had a dream game this evening. After scoring a hundred, he was active in the field too. In the 17th over of the MI innings, Daniel Sams made a big heave towards the mid-wicket area but couldn’t middle the ball perfectly. Jos Buttler ran behind from inside the circle and made a full-stretch dive to complete the catch.

Watch the video here.

Catch Dropped off Hat-trick Ball

The 17th over of the Mumbai innings saw Yuzvendra Chahal dismissing two batters in two balls. Chahal was on a hat trick, and he managed to get an outside edge off Murugan Ashwin, but Karun Nair dropped the chance in the slip cordon, denying his teammate a hat trick.

Pollard Confusing the Umpire

On the second ball of the 17th over by Prasidh Krishna, Kieron Pollard was hit on the pads. The West Indian batter quickly bluffed the umpire, showing him his bat to convey that he had nicked the ball.

RR didn’t go for the review as the umpire shook his head. However, the replays suggested that Pollard’s bat was in no way near the ball.

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