Could have tried more reverse sweeps, says Sanju Samson, as RR fall short yet again

SRH beat RR in Qualifier 2 to fix a final date with KKR. (Source:

It would not have been surprising if the Rajasthan Royals (RR) had been overwhelmed by the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) top order. However, it was the SRH spin duo of Shahbaz Ahmed and Abhishek Sharma that orchestrated the Royals’ downfall. Shahbaz and Abhishek bowled 8 overs, conceding just 47 runs and taking 5 wickets. Shahbaz led the attack with figures of 3-23, while Abhishek impressed with 2-24.

Following the match, RR skipper Sanju Samson acknowledged that his team lost control in the middle overs. “We were found short of options in the middle overs against their spin, that’s where we lost the game,” Samson said at the post-match presentation. “They bowled their spin in the middle overs against our right-handed batsmen, that’s where they were one-up against us. Against their left-arm spin, when the ball was stopping, we could have tried a bit more reverse-sweeps or maybe used the crease a bit more. They also bowled really well.”

The last time the Orange Army lifted the IPL title was in 2016, under the leadership of David Warner. Seven years later, another Australian, Pat Cummins, has led the Hyderabad-based franchise to the final. As SRH skipper, Cummins is hoping for one final push in the final on Sunday against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).

“There’s a great vibe in the squad as you can see and the final was the goal at the start of the season and we made it,” said Cummins. “This is for the entire franchise, probably 60 or 70 people who have put their heart and soul into this, and hopefully, there’s one more to go.” 

Shahbaz, who was brought in as an Impact Substitute during the first innings, couldn’t contribute significantly with the bat in the late overs, leading to SRH posting a below-par total. However, with the ball, he made the most of the conditions, delivering a game-changing spell.

“The captain and coach told me, depending on the situation we will use you” said Shahbaz. “My role was to bat lower down the order, and they said if we collapse, we will send you. When I was batting, I felt that this wicket had something and the way Avesh and Sandeep bowled showed that.”