Mumbai, May 3 (IANS) Kagiso Rabada claimed an excellent four-fer (4/33) and helped Punjab Kings restrict Gujarat Titans to 143/8 despite a hard-fought fifty by Sai Sudharsan (64 not out off 50) in Match No. 48 of IPL 2022 at the Dr. D.Y Patil Stadium, here on Tuesday.
Sudharsan, who came to bat at No. 3, was the lone warrior with the bat for Gujarat, who kept losing wickets at regular intervals during their innings. After Sudharsan, Wriddhiman Saha (21 off 17) was the second-highest scorer for GT.
After winning the toss and opting to bat first, Gujarat were off to a terrible start, losing the wickets of both openers — Wriddhiman Saha (21 off 17) and Shubman Gill (9 off 6) inside the first four overs.
In the first ball of the 3rd over, Gill pushed the ball to cover and went for a quick single, but Liam Livingstone was sharp on the field, hitting the stumps at the non-striker’s end while on the move to catch the GT opener short of his crease.
Gill had a few complaints against the bowler Sandeep Sharma, seemingly accusing him of being in the way but that wasn’t really the case as Sandeep stood his ground after a follow-through and was merely watching the ball. On the other hand, Saha showed his aggressive intent right from the beginning and looked in fine touch before he was dismissed by Rabada on a cross-seam delivery, leaving Gujarat at 34-2 after 3.5 overs.
From there on, skipper Hardik Pandya and Sai Sudharsan batted cautiously and took GT to 42/2 in 6 overs. After the end of the powerplay, the Punjab skipper brought Rishi Dhawan into the attack and he got the big wicket of Hardik (1) in the sent ball of his over, putting Gujarat in trouble.
Punjab didn’t take their foot off the pedal for the next three-four overs and maintained the constant pressure on Sudarshan and David Miller with disciplined bowling. With runs not coming easily for Gujarat, Miller (11) looked to release the pressure against the tossed-up delivery bowled by Livingstone but he was found by Rabada at long-off.
Though Sudharshan was struggling to find his timing for a majority of his innings, he held one end up. However, the left-hander didn’t get any kind of support from the lower down batters — Rahul Tewatia (11), Rashid Khan (0), Pradeep Sangwan (2) Lockie Ferguson (5) — who couldn’t do much.
With 129-8 after 18.2 overs, Gujarat were in a position to get bowled out but Sudarshan showed his temperament and hit a few precious boundaries, in the end, to help Gujarat Titans finish with 143/8 in 20 overs.
Apart from Rabada (4/33), the likes of Rishi Dhawan (1/26), Liam Livingstone (1/15), and Arshdeep Singh (1/35) also chipped in with one wicket each for Punjab.
Brief scores: Gujarat Titans 143/8 in 20 overs (Sai Sudharsan 64 not out, Wriddhiman Saha 21; Kagiso Rabada 4/33) vs Punjab Kings