Suryakumar hits fifty to help Mumbai Indians win first game of season
The batter scored 51 and Tilak Varma made 35 as the five-time winners chased down Rajasthan Royals’ model total of 158/6, winning by five wickets at DY Patil Stadium
Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Varma have been among the most consistent Mumbai Indians’ batters this season. On Sunday, The duo shared a third-wicket stand of 81 runs off 56 balls to guide the team to their first win of IPL 2022 after eight losses in a row. It was a comfortable five-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals at the DY Patil Stadium. (Follow IPL 2022 full coverage)
They came together at 41/2 with skipper Rohit Sharma (2) and Ishan Kishan (26—18b), who looked aggressive while he at the crease, dismissed.
Though the wicket was a bit two-paced, they ensured the run rate did not spiral out of control by rotating the strike and pulling off those big shots in between. It was in contrast to when RR were batting as the flow of boundaries completely dried up in the middle overs.
Yadav (51—39b) brought up his third half-century of the season with a six of R Ashwin (1/21) before holing out down the ground off Yuzvendra Chahal (1/33). Varma (35—30b) departed two balls later while trying to take on Prasidh Krishna (1/29). Tim David (20, 9b) and Daniel Sams, with a six off the first ball he faced, made sure MI got over the line this time around.
While Yadav and Varma steered them to victory, the bowlers set the tone as Mumbai chased their lowest total this season. The lowest they had conceded this season before 158/6 on Sunday was 168/8 against Lucknow Super Giants in their last match at the Wankhede Stadium on April 24, but they had lost by 36 runs.
Saturday started with Jasprit Bumrah’s (0/27) fiery spell in the powerplay where he almost had Jos Buttler caught at deep square-leg. It ended with Riley Meredith (2/24) conceding just three runs and stopping a dangerous Shimron Hetmyer (6), who was looking to launch. Another of the MI youngsters, left-arm mystery spinner Kumar Kartikeya Singh, enjoyed a dream debut as he took a wicket off his second ball and bowled tightly to finish with figures of 1/19. He removed RR skipper Sanju Samson, who hit a long hop to deep point. The 24-year-old Madhya Pradesh player was drafted in a few days back as a replacement for the injured Mohd Arshad Khan.
Buttler scored a 52-ball 67—his third half-century to go with three centuries—to take RR to a par total. It wasn’t a stroke-filled innings one usually associates with the England player but was a crucial one from RR’s point of view as their next top-scorer was R Ashwin down the order, scoring a nine-ball 21.
The two-paced nature of the wicket wasn’t to his liking but Buttler didn’t throw his wicket away. His moment came in the 16th over bowled by young offie Hrithik Shokeen (2/47), who had bowled with better control in his previous two overs. Buttler was looking to let loose and he did so by hitting four consecutive sixes before being caught at long-off. He has aggregated 566 runs in nine matches this IPL so far.
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