Sandeep, Yashasvi help RR breeze past MI

Jaiswal back in form for the Royals. Source (X)

The Rajasthan Royals are looking unstoppable at the moment, showcasing an impressive brand of cricket and finding their men for the moment when needed. Against Mumbai Indians, Sandeep Sharma came back from injury with a five-wicket haul, while Yashasvi Jaiswal silenced his critics with a century. It was his first substantial effort in IPL 2024. RR stayed on top with 14 points from eight games after the nine-wicket win. MI are seventh with six points from eight.

Fast bowlers steal the show for RR in powerplay

Against a formidable MI batting line-up, how you commence with the ball becomes crucial. Trent Boult has developed a reputation for striking with the new ball, and tonight was no exception as he dismissed the dangerous Rohit Sharma for just six, courtesy of a fine catch by Sanju Samson. Boult exhibited astute variations in length, coupled with a hint of swing, causing trouble for the Hitman from the outset. Sandeep, often an underrated player in the IPL, claimed the crucial wickets of Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav. He went on to record career-best IPL figures of 5-18, which will give him confidence going ahead. The early breakthroughs gave RR an advantage inside the first six overs.

Varma and Wadhera lead MI fightback

In a challenging situation, left-handers Tilak Varma and Nehal Wadhera joined forces to forge a partnership that revitalised MI and brought them back in contention. Varma has emerged as the team’s linchpin this season, shouldering the responsibility of anchoring the innings. His composed knock of 65 off 45 deliveries came at a crucial juncture. The innings showed maturity and class. Varma exhibited a blend of caution and aggression, proving his growth as a player over time. Wadhera, who impressed in the previous season, seized the opportunity to shine once again. Though he fell just short of a well-deserved fifty, his contribution played a vital role in reviving MI’s fortunes in the game.

Jaiswal back in business for RR

There were high expectations surrounding Jaiswal after a fantastic Test series against England. However, the opener struggled to find rhythm, often getting out to shots he wouldn’t normally play. Yet, the Jaiswal who stepped onto the field tonight reminded all why he’s such a special talent. Giving himself the liberty to take time early on, Jaiswal capitalised on the situation once he was well-settled. He stuck to the basics, playing proper cricketing shots, which worked in his favour. His knock was the differentiating factor in the run chase, helping RR get over the line comfortably. He makes batting look effortless when he is in form and RR would be delighted now that both their openers are building good rhythm.

Below-par bowling and fielding hurt MI

MI will have a lot to ponder before their next fixture. Their bowling was lacklustre. Besides Piyush Chawla and Jasprit Bumrah, no other bowler posed a threat, making life easy for the RR batters. Nuwan Thushara, brought in as an impact player, had a disappointing outing, being taken to the cleaners. Players like Gerald Coetzee were underutilised. Captain Hardik Pandya’s bowling was average yet again, raising concerns not only for his franchise but also for the Indian team ahead of the T20 World Cup. MI have a lot of work to do to stay in the tournament.

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