Sanju Samson with his prime touch;
Sanju Samson finally happened. “He’s batting as well as I’ve seen any batsman bat in the game,” said Shane Warne before Rajasthan Royals’ previous game. Then there was a touch of bluster about that statement. But watching Samson cream 92 off 45 against Royal Challengers Bangalore, that thought might need a revisit. Studded with ten sixes and two fours, Samson was batting on a plane much higher than anyone else around him on a pitch that was slightly sluggish. RCB’s spinners, Yuzvendra Chahal (5.5 RPO) and Washington Sundar (7.50), were the most economical bowlers, but Samson’s clinical lofting against the pacers, particularly in the death overs was enough to take the Royals to a total of 217.
Kohli with his attempt to get over the final line;
Kohli with his fastest fifty to a certain extent lit the hope of chasing the mammoth total down. But his unfortunate dismissal extinguished the ray of hope for Bangalore boys. At least Virat Kohli was dominating the adversaries until the moment he was in the middle. RCB’s captain took it upon himself to lead the chase after Brendon McCullum’s departure in the first over. While Samson dealt in sixes, Kohli’s method was his trusted one of going for boundaries. And they flowed off his bat almost as soon as he came in. Hitting his fastest T20 fifty (off 26 balls), Kohli ensured that RCB kept up with the asking rate until he was there. And there were more nervy moments for RR when Jos Buttler first missed a stumping chance against de Villiers and then a run out chance in the next over. Thankfully for him, those didn’t prove to be costly.