Rajasthan Royals produced a super effort at the Sheik Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi and beat Chennai Super Kings by seven wickets. With this win, Steve Smith & Co almost knocked the three-time winners out of IPL 2020.
Put to bowl first, the Royals first choked their batting, which no longer looks like it was. The spinners – Rahul Tewatia and Shreya Gopal bowled extremely well in the middle backed by the incredible Jofra Archer. Ravindra Jadeja was the only batsman to show some intent, remaining unbeaten on 35 to help Chennai post 125 runs on the board.
It was a cakewalk for Rajasthan in the end. After a brisk start by Ben Stokes, Chennai Super Kings pulled things back quickly. They reduced Rajasthan from 26 for no loss to 28 for three to have an upper hand, but Steve Smith and Jos Buttler took complete control of the game to see it through.
Bowlers put up a brilliant show – Steve Smith
They added 98 runs for the fourth wicket playing out Chennai bowlers to sail past the target. Buttler remained unbeaten on 70 runs while Smith chipped in with 26 to earn two crucial points. Speaking at the end of the game, Steve Smith credited his bowlers for putting up a brilliant show and set up the win.
“Sharjah is a little different from here. The wicket was stopping, not the best for batting, and good to be on the winning side. I thought we bowled well in the powerplay. The spinners bowled good lengths, with the googlies and leggies, building a lot of pressure. Tewatia and Shreyas have been sensational for us,” Smith said.
Furthermore, Steve Smith also spoke highly of Jos Buttler for taking off all the pressure from him. He also said that it was because of Buttler, they managed to stay at par with the required run-rate and chase down the score.
“Buttler took the pressure off me. I just knocked it around, and he just batted the way he usually does. He always maintains a good strike-rate,” Steve Smith concluded.