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2.6 overs (0 Run)
2.5 overs (0 Run)
This one comes back in a lot. Good length ball pitching well outside off. Gayle carefully shoulders arms to it and watches it swing back in a lot on its way to the keeper.
Chris Gayle is the new batsman in.
2.4 overs (0 Run)
OUT! CAUGHT BEHIND! Chetan Sakariya gets his first wicket in this league and what a moment for him. A moment he will never forget for the rest of his life. He was a net bowler for Bangalore in the previous edition but now he is in the middle of the action and amongst the big boys. To mark this occasion he has got the big wicket of Mayank Agarwal! Full and wide outside off, Mayank decides to clear his front leg and slog this to the off side. The idea seems to be to put pressure on the youngster. The plan though backfires as the ball is bowled quickly. It catches the outside edge of Mayank Agarwal’s willow and goes straight into the mitts of Sanju Samson. He takes his first catch as a skipper of Rajasthan. Chetan Sakariya is elated and so are his teammates. An early breakthrough for Rajasthan. Just what the doctor ordered.
2.3 overs (1 Run)
Very good shot but just for one. Good length delivery around off, Rahul gets on top of the bounce and plays a gorgeous cover drive. Sanju though has kept a man in the deep there. So just a single.
2.2 overs (0 Run)
A very excited appeal from Chetan Sakariya. So much so that he falls while appealing. The umpire though is unmoved. On the pads, Rahul looks to flick but misses it as it comes in a bit. Sakariya appeals and tumbles onto the ground but nothing from the umpire.
2.1 overs (0 Run)
Good length delivery around off. Rahul defends it to the off side.
1.6 overs (4 Runs)
FOUR! Boundary to finish the over! Mustafizur changes his length and gets punished. He goes full on middle, Mayank shows lovely wrist work and hand-eye coordination. He whips it away from the diving short mid-wicket fielder and well away from mid on for a boundary. Excellent shot to finish the over.
1.5 overs (2 Runs)
Mustafizur continues to hit the length consistently in his first over. It is on middle, Mayank clips it to the right of mid on and gets a brace.
1.5 overs (1 Run)
WIDE! Mustafizur Rahman misses his line and bowls this down the leg side. Mayank looks to flick but misses. Wided by the umpire.
1.4 overs (1 Run)
Good length ball bowled at pace. Mustafizur looks in a good rhythm. Rahul clips it to the leg side and rotates the strike.
1.3 overs (1 Run)
Length ball on middle and leg, Mayank plays it to the on side and gets away from the danger end.
1.2 overs (0 Run)
Good ball! Appeal for LBW but turned down. A very close call this but the ball seems to have been doing too much. Good length ball pitching on middle. It comes back in with pace. Mayank looks to defend but misses and gets hit high on the pad. There is a huge appeal but the umpire is unmoved. Sanju thinks about the review but does not opt for it. Well…well…well. Replays roll in later and it shows it was going to hit the top of middle stump. Rajasthan have missed a trick here.
1.1 overs (2 Runs)
Mustafizur starts his Rajasthan career with a good length ball on off. Mayank places it away from short third man and away from the fielder at deep point. The batters take two.
Mustafizur Rahman to bowl from the other end.
0.6 over (4 Runs)
FOUR! Boundary to finish the over. Exciting but expensive first over for Chetan Sakariya! He misses his line and bowls it on the pads. It is quick from Sakariya. Rahul clips it fine down the leg side. Away from the diving, Sanju Samson and the ball races to the fence.
0.5 over (1 Run)
Good bowling and good running as well. Length ball on middle and it comes back in. Mayank taps it towards Morris at mid off and calls for the run straightaway. KL Rahul goes with the call. Morris has a shy at the bowler’s end but misses.
0.4 over (0 Run)
Much better from Chetan Sakariya! He gets the ball to curve back in and cramps Mayank for room. It is on middle and leg. Mayank Agarwal dabs it to short third man.
0.3 over (4 Runs)
FOUR! Mayank Agarwal gets off the mark in style! A kind gift from the debutant to Mayank first up. Short and wide outside off. Mayank says thank you very much and smacks it through covers for a boundary.
0.2 over (1 Run)
Rahul and Punjab get their first run of the season. Sakariya pulls his length back and bowls it around off. Once again this ball comes back in to Rahul. The Punjab skipper, hops and taps it to the side of the pitch on the off side and takes a quick single.
0.1 over (0 Run)
Sakariya starts right on the money. A little bit of inward movement to the right-hander. It is full and on off. Rahul walks inside the line of it and pushes it to mid on.
We are all set for the action to begin! The umpires make their way out to the middle. Rajasthan players are in a huddle, with their young skipper, Sanju Samson giving final words of motivation before his side takes the field. Punjab skipper, KL Rahul strides out with his longtime pal, Mayank Agarwal to open the innings. Debutant, Chetan Sakariya is all set to get into the thick of action straightaway. He will operate with the new ball first up.
Punjab (Playing XI) – KL Rahul (C), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran (WK), Deepak Hooda, Shahrukh Khan, Jhye Richardson, Murugan Ashwin, Riley Meredith, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh.
Punjab’s Nicholas Pooran is caught for a chat. Pooran says that he is very happy to be back in India and hopes to have a wonderful season. Tells everyone is excited in the squad. Pooran tells he is looking to improve and be himself. Pooran says they need to focus on doing the right thing. On Gayle, Pooran hopes that they can witness a Gaylestorm tonight.
Rajasthan (Playing XI) – Jos Buttler, Manan Vohra, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson (C/WK), Riyan Parag, Shivam Dube, Rahul Tewatia, Chris Morris, Shreyas Gopal, Chetan Sakariya, Mustafizur Rahman.
Punjab skipper, KL Rahul says that everyone wants to bowl first on this venue but now they will have to play good cricket now and the results will follow. Rahul tells it is about the team coming together. Rahul says they felt they needed to fix some positions and is happy with the auctions. Rahul informs Meredith, Richardson, Gayle and Pooran are the four foreigners playing this game.
Sanju Samson, Rajasthan skipper, says they will bowl first. Adds that they have a strong team as they have bought some good players in the auction. Informs that Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Chris Morris and Mustafizur Rahman are their four overseas players. Ends by saying that he is excited about the role.
TOSS – It is time to beat the Monday blues as Sanju Samson is out in the middle for the first time as a skipper for the toss. Punjab captain, KL Rahul is out as well along with the match referee. Sanju Samson has the coin in hand. Up it goes. Rahul calls Tails but it comes down as Heads. RAJASTHAN OPT TO BOWL!
PITCH REPORT – Simon Doull is the pitch master for the day. Doull says the pitch is the same that was used in the game between Chennai and Delhi. Tells Delhi bowled full and that made it hard to hit while Chennai tried to do the same, the dew played a factor. Tells that is the reason sides will look to choose bowl first. Adds that the pitch is great to bat.
6 teams have played their opening games now. Time for the remaining two to go against each other and kick off their campaign. Hello and welcome to the first Monday of the season and to game no. 4. Sanju Samson kick starts his captaincy career with Rajasthan against another young but a bit more experienced captain in KL Rahul. Rajasthan will hope that a new skipper at helm can also see them move over the disappointment of 2020 campaign. The 2008 champions will miss the services of Archer but will hope that the most expensive buy in the history of this league, Morris can make up for it. A new logo, a new name and hopefully change of fates as well for KL Rahul led side. They too failed to get into the top 4 in the 2020 season and have added some quality players in the form of Malan, Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith. Those additions have made them stronger on paper but games are won on the field and Rahul will hope his troops can get their campaign started with a victory. A fascinating contest awaits us to beat your Monday blues. Stay tuned for toss and further updates.
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