Jaipur, Apr 17: Chasing 197 to win, Rahul Dravid's quick fire 42 gave Rajasthan Royals the needed momentum as they registered their fourth win in the fifth edition of IPL. Later Rahane and Brad Hodge's heroics helped Rajasthan win by 5 wickets, played at Sawai Mansingh Stadium at Jaipur on Tuesday.
This win put Rajasthan on top of the table with eight points. Deccan are last after two last-over losses in three games. They have two points.
After being hammered for 62 runs in the field restrictions of 6 overs, Deccan Chargers looked helpless as Dravid 42 (24 balls) and Rahane 44 (31 balls) set the tone for a royal chase, as they scored 50 off 29 balls before Dravid was dismissed by Daniel Christian.
Then Rahane took over, as he scored 44 runs off 31 balls. Though he did not stay long after Dravid's dismissal, as he fell six short of his third half century in IPL 5, as Amit Mishra got his man in the 14th over. Rahane had already laid the foundation for a win.
Looked like Rahane's wicket was the turning point of the match as Owais Shah followed suit in the 16th over which gave the match a thrilling finish, as Royals needed 55 runs off 23 balls.
Hodge hit 3 boundaries in Dale Steyn's over to ease the pressure off the 18th over. Botha, who was with Hodge, was dismissed for 14 by Anand Rajan in the 19th over, making the match even more interesting. Botha (14) and Hodge (48 not out) played a fantastic knock to lead the team to victory, marking their third consecutive win in the tournament.
It was Hodge's knock of unbeaten 48 off 21 balls which helped the Royals to register another win, as Deccan Chargers witnessed another heart-breaking loss which went to the wire till 19.4 overs.
Tension increased every ball as Royals needed 11 runs off the last 6 balls, bowled by Steyn. Royals smashed their opponents when the pressure mounted, as they hit two boundaries off the third and the fourth delivery off the last over to register their fourth win in the tournament. Wicketkeeper Dishant Yagnik, playing his first game, did not succumb to pressure as he smashed two successive boundaries of Steyn in the final over to be home in another thriller. Hodge was awarded the Man-of-the-match.
Amit Mishra's 3/32 ended up in the losing side. Poor fielding and bowling cost them the match as Dravid's boys took advantage of the dropped catches and mis-fielding to win the match.
Deccan Chargers Innings Report
Shikhar Dhawan's magnificent fifty set the tone for Deccan Chargers as they posted 196/2 in 20 overs. Kumar Sangakkara and Dhawan marked the team's best opening partnership in this year's IPL as that laid the foundation to set a target of 197 for Rahul Dravid's boys to win the 20th game of IPL 5.
The changes made were worth it, as Deccan Chargers' key player J P Duminy played a magnificent knock 58 off 26 balls, which included 5 huge hits to the stands and 3 boundaries.
His partnership with Christian was the key as the run-rate dipped after Dhawan's dismissal. The duo added 88 runs off just 6.5 overs (41 balls) for the third wicket which set up a winning target.
After winning the toss, Sangakkara and Dhawan added 94 runs for the first wicket, marking their highest opening partnership for the fifth season of IPL. 94 runs came off 10.4 overs, which included 11 boundaries.
Interestingly most of the runs have come through boundaries as they have taken less singles during the 60 ball stand.
Rajasthan did enjoy their moments in the game, as they got rid of the danger man, Dhawan in the 14th over which in turn reduced the run-rate, as it slid from 9.27 to just above 7 runs per over.
This could probably be the turning point of the innings, as the talented batsman had scored 52 off 43 balls before being dismissed by Trivedi.
Apart from Siddarth Trivedi (6.75), all the bowlers were hammered for runs, as their economy rate narrates the story. Hodge (13), Amit Singh (13.75) Pankaj Singh (12.33) Hogg (8.25).
With 197 to win, Royals need big knocks from Rahul Dravid, Ajinkya Rahane and Owais Shah.
Rajasthan Royals: Rahul Dravid (captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Dishant Yagnik (wicketkeeper), Owais Shah, Ashok Menaria, Johan Botha, Brad Hogg, Amit Singh, Siddharth Trivedi, Pankaj Singh, Brad Hodge.
Deccan Chargers: Kumar Sangakkara (captain, wicketkeeper), JP Duminy, Bharat Chipli, Daniel Christian, Shikhar Dhawan, Anand Rajan, Amit Mishra, Tanmay Mishra, Dale Steyn, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, Ankit Sharma
Umpires: Aleem Dar (Pakistan) and Bruce Oxenford (Australia)
TV umpire: Anil Chowdhury (India)
Match referee: Rajendra Jadeja (India)