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  5. Jos Buttler makes Sunil Narine's superman effort go waste to help Rajasthan Royals pull off heist in Kolkata

Jos Buttler makes Sunil Narine's superman effort go waste to help Rajasthan Royals pull off heist in Kolkata

Rajasthan Royals recorded joint-highest successful chase in IPL, equalling their own record as Jos Buttler stood up on the night that mattered despite struggling with the cramps to not only smash his 7th century in the tournament but to take his side to their sixth win against KKR at Eden Gardens.

Edited By: Anshul Gupta @oyegupta_ New Delhi Updated on: April 17, 2024 6:21 IST
Jos Buttler helped Rajasthan Royals pull off a miraculous
Image Source : BCCI/IPL Jos Buttler helped Rajasthan Royals pull off a miraculous win by chasing down 224 runs on the final delivery against the Kolkata Knight Riders

Rajasthan Royals (RR) continue to script miracles in the 2024 edition of the IPL as they pulled of a heist of the highest order as the top-of-the-table clash against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) lived up to its billing with the Men in Pink sneaking home by just two wickets in a run-fest at Eden Gardens on Tuesday, April 16. The Royals equalled their own record of highest successful chase in the IPL as they tracked down 224 runs on the final ball of the match with Jos Buttler smashing his seventh century in the tournament, breaking Chris Gayle's record.

At 128/6 in 14 overs, it looked like the Knight Riders had started bossing the game, especially since they got a couple of wickets in one over including that of Shimron Hetmyer on the very first ball. However, Buttler and Rovman Powell didn't give up. They respected Narine and didn't let him get the wickets but the situation was such that they had to go after everyone, so they began with Varun Chakravarthy. Fours fours and a wide, Rr got 17 runs off the over, one more than the required.

This over was necessary for not just the Royals to kickstart their finishing kick but also for Buttler, who had sort of dug himself into a hole at 42 off 33 prior to the start of the over. Seeing Buttler go, Rovman Powell switched gears with a six off Andre Russell off the first ball of the next over. Another six in the over from Buttler helped the Royals get 17 more.

RR started to believe again. Then came probably the turning point of the chase. Powell dropped fear in the dustbin, went 4, 6, 6 against his compatriot Narine. But Narine was smart enough to come back with a dot and Powell's wicket. More than a cricket match, it felt like two boxers were going at each other, relentlessly. One gave a couple of punches, the other came back hard with three and neither was wanting to go down. 

After Powell's wicket, it was Buttler vs KKR and the former won, which tells you the nerves of steel this man carries. Hogging the strike meant, denying singles and making 1s into twos. Buttler got a six off the first ball from Mitchell Starc but a denied single and forcefully converted double meant he had to sacrifice Trent Boult's wicket. But that didn't matter as Buttler needed someone to just stick with him, no matter who it was.

Then came probably another match-turner in five wides with Phil Salt's lazy effort with the gloves as the Royals got 18 off Starc. 28 off 12? Not much of a task these days, is it? A couple of sixes, a four, a double and a single off the last ball, exactly how Buttler planned it and got it.

9 off the last over, Buttler got a six off the first ball and it was all over or was it? Three dot balls from Chakravarthy made it close but Buttler knew what he was doing. A couple and then a single of the last ball and the job was done. Eight out of eight tons in T20s in winning cause, seven of them in IPL, Buttler is some player, isn't it?

Royals needed something like that from Buttler to top a day Sunil Narine had. A maiden T20 century off just 49 balls, a couple of wickets and a catch, Narine basically did whatever he could in a match and 223 wasn't a low score by any means. However, KKR will rue small moments in the game. Five wides, a couple of big overs, a couple of tactical errors in letting Buttler take a single on the last ball of the two overs in a row, rather easily.

Royals remain on the top and need just two wins to confirm a place in the playoffs while KKR are now on level with Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad with two losses and four wins in six games.

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