With Mumbai and Rajasthan having played each other twice, this edition's quota of optical illusion is over. Someone must do something about their similar uniforms, as the teams should about the remaining two play-off spots. HYD and CHN have qualified; and PUN, KOL and RAJ are tied on 12 points (and in that order), while Mumbai hover around on 10 points. Should be a tight finish, just as the major reshuffle before the season promised. Time for Pratyush Sinha to mop up the comm. box clean alongside Shashikant Singh, Sriram, Vineet Anantharaman, Ramakrishnan and Akshay Maanay. Time to get my dinner bills settled.. ta-ta!
Buttler - Player of the Match: "Found some good form and I'm trying to keep it going. Bit of do-or-die situation for us. I've spent a lot of time batting in the middle order, so I try to be there till the end. Our bowlers bowled very well and restricted them to about 15 runs less. The familiarity of the ground and the wicket helped me today. Looking forward to the next game."
Rahane: "Great win for all of us. 168-169 on this wicket was 10-15 runs short. Jofra's couple of wickets in that over changed the game actually. We didn't get a partnership in the earlier games but we knew that if we get one early on, it'll be easy to chase. The discussion before the game was to get used to the wicket as soon as possible. There's room for improvement in the fielding department. I want the boys to stand up and do well in that."
Jofra Archer: It was a good pitch to bowl on. It was a set plan to bowl spin up front. We weren't really nervous coming into the game tonight.
Samson: Very happy. The team atmosphere has been good whether we have been winning or losing and that matters now. He (Buttler) is in amazing form. Real players come out when the team needs them. Very lucky to have him. Very happy with the way I am batting and my contribution to the team. That was amazing (the Hardik Pandya catch). I have been working on my fitness and thanks to our fielding coach Dishant Yagnik.
Rohit Sharma: On a pitch like that we should have scored 15-20 runs more. In the games that we lost in the past, we didn't finish well with the bat. Today was another game we didn't finish well, but I don't want to be too harsh because we have been playing good cricket. We need to work on a few areas. We need to keep our heads high and hope for two good games. It's not going to be easy defending whatever target is set, but that's not an excuse for us. We have played enough cricket to understand the conditions here. He (Buttler) has been in great form. He didn't give us any chances.
It was Buttler again, striking his fifth consecutive fifty as an opener and taking Rajasthan home. He had Rahane's run-a-ball innings for company, and got through some sharp deliveries from Bumrah, who before today had gotten him out on three out of three occasions. The win takes Rajasthan to the fifth position, while Mumbai sit below them, low at sixth.
- RAJ beating MUM tonight means CHN has become the second team to qualify for the Playoffs of T20 League 2018 after HYD. - PUN and only one among RAJ/KOL can now reach max of 16. MUM & BLR can now finish with a max of 14 points.- Buttler is the first player to be stranded in the 90s in two successive innings in T20 League
11:34pm local: Ben Stokes is beating Buttler's back like a drum. He's pumped up and rightly so. Make no mistake about this win. This is huge. With both teams tied on 10 points, and RAJ lagging behind on the NRAJ, this match was crucial, bearing the potential to be a sustainer in the competition. And Rajasthan take the honours, sending CHN into the play-offs. Rahane won a good toss, put Mumbai in, strangled them after a good opening stand, and chased it with dew for aid.
Wonder if it'll Stokes hitting the winning runs. Nah, Buttler is on strike
Ben Stokes, left handed bat, comes to the crease
Hardik Pandya to Samson, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Hardik Pandya [3.0-0-34-1] is back into the attack
Mitchell McClenaghan [3.0-0-19-0] is back into the attack
See Shane Warne out there in the middle in the time-out. Rohit's animated in his little huddle. Let's see what we have in store.
Time-out! With 25 needed off the last 4 overs, MUM can do with it. Doesn't look like this total will be defended. So much dew that Yadav slipped in the outfield while taking the catch, so imagine the bowlers trying to slip in the slower ones on a flat deck.
Mayank Markande [2.0-0-20-0] is back into the attack
Bumrah, Mitch and Pandya each have one over left. It's going to be interesting. Here's MM
Buttler is the second player to score 80+ in three successive innings in T20 League after Maxwell in 2014.
Sorry for that dew pun. we are waiting for the ball btw
Jasprit Bumrah [2.0-0-20-1] is back into the attack
51 runs, 6 overs. That's 8.5 runs per over, which is not huge. RAJ should get there as long as Buttler's at the crease
Samson in T20 League -Batting 1st: 29 inngs, Avg 32.74, SR 134.76, 1 X 100s, 5 X 50sBatting 2nd: 44 inngs, Avg 21.97, SR 124.57, 4 X 50s
Sanju Samson, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Hardik Pandya to Rahane, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Mitchell McClenaghan [2.0-0-14-0] is back into the attack
Fifties in five consecutive inngs in T20s:V Sehwag for DEL (2012)H Masakadza for Zim/ Zim XI (2012)K Akmal for Lahore Whites (2017)J BUTTLER for RAJ (2018) *
Hardik Pandya [1.0-0-7-0] is back into the attack
83/1 at the half-way mark. MUM were 86/0, so there's not a lot between the teams here
Ball# 8.5 wasn't an invitation to switch to IRE-PAK, although my colleagues are doing a commendable job. It's your call.
Krunal Pandya pulls out as he sees Buttler shuffling early
Krunal Pandya [2.0-0-16-0] is back into the attack
Time for some leg spin. Markande has no slip
Time-out! 111 off 78 needed.
Jasprit Bumrah [1.0-0-13-1] is back into the attack
Hardik Pandya, right-arm fast medium, comes into the attack
Markande is not sure about the catch. He asks the square leg umpire to check it with the TV umpire. Mumbai are not confident. They are going back to their respective positions. Fair delivery. Not Out!
Krunal Pandya, left-arm orthodox, comes into the attack
Most wickets after 50 T20 League matches:81 L Malinga68 S Narine66 M McClenaghan *66 A Mishra/ Y Chahal65 Munaf Patel
Rohit has a slip in place
Mitchell McClenaghan, left-arm fast medium, comes into the attack
Ajinkya Rahane, right handed bat, comes to the crease
This is the first time D'Arcy Short has been dismissed by a pacer in T20 League 2018
Bumrah to D Arcy Short, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Slip comes in
D Arcy Short and Buttler are at the crease. D Arcy Short is on strike. Bumrah will open the attack