Rajasthan Royals have been one of the teams to beat this season. Their ability to outfox opponents with planning and teamwork has caught everyone's attention. They lack star players, but their tactics of focusing on opposition's weaknesses have worked very well.
On Wednesday, the slower
delivery seemed to be their weapon of the day. They managed to outwit two in-form Mumbai Indians batsmen, Rohit Sharma and Dinesh Karthik. Both fell trying to force the pace.
But Mumbai were served well by their million-dollar man, Glenn Maxwell, and local boy Aditya Tare, who made his first appearance this season after Sachin Tendulkar was ruled out after failing to recover from the tendon injury to his right hand.
The youngster's enterprising knock, scoring 59 off 37 balls with eight fours and a towering six, helped Mumbai finish on 166/8. Rajasthan fell short, finishing on 152/7 after being left to get 23 runs in the final over.
On a high
Tare, 25, grabbed his chance to shine. On his home ground and having enjoyed a successful Ranji season, he showed no sign of nerves. Playing his first game in the league since 2010, he was in control at the venue where he has been plying his trade for over six years in Ranji competition.
Luck too seemed to be on his side as the reliable Rahul Dravid missed a sitter at short mid-wicket when Tare was on 24. He made the most of the escape, crafting his first half century in the league.
Kevon Cooper eventually brought the innings to a halt, deceiving the batsman with a slower delivery. Rajasthan bowlers dominated from then on as they stifled the opposition batsmen for runs and Mumbai's misery was compounded when Rohit Sharma and Keiron Pollard fell in quick succession.
But Rajasthan's top order batsmen simply caved in. Dravid and Ajinkya Rahane failed to reach double figures as the first four batsmen fell to the pace of Mitchell Johnson and Dhawal Kulkarni. Stuart Binny (37 no) and Brad Hodge (39) kept up the fight but were left to get too many against Lasith Malinga in the final over.