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IPL 2024: Rajasthan Royals defeated Punjab Kings by 3 wickets due to Shimron’s brilliant batting.

Mullanpur. Shimron Hetmyer played a brilliant inning of unbeaten 27 runs in 10 balls in a difficult time for the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2024 match at the Maharaja Yadvendra Singh International Cricket Stadium here on Saturday. In a thrilling low-scoring match, Rajasthan Royals defeated Punjab Kings by three wickets to remain on top of the points table.

After restricting PBKS to 147/8 in 20 overs, RR were in trouble when Hetmyer came in after Riyan Parag fell and saw Dhruv Jurel also dismissed. Under increasing pressure, Hetmyer hit three sixes including the winning four to bring RR over the line with one ball to spare.

In another last over encounter between the two teams, Rovman Powell also helped RR secure a close win by scoring a crucial 11 runs in five balls.

Chasing a modest target of 148 runs, Tanush Kotian, playing as an opener for the first time in T20, made a great start by cutting Arshdeep Singh’s ball at backward point and hit another four off the fast bowler’s ball. From the other end, Yashasvi Jaiswal timed his flick well and drove well to take two fours.

Although Kotian struggled to get going despite dismissing Kagiso Rabada at mid-on for four, Jaiswal cut away Sam Curran’s delivery and a misfield also helped him take two fours. For the first time, RR did not lose a single wicket in the power-play of IPL 2024.

Sanju Samson played a positive role in RR’s chase by hitting sixes and fours off Livingstone’s balls. PBKS’ ploy to bring back Rabada worked as Jasiwal upper-cut the rising delivery but was caught by third man and trapped Samson LBW in his next over.

Arshdeep put PBKS ahead when he had Parag caught in the deep on the top-edge, followed by Harshal Patel who took a brilliant catch to have Jurel caught by Shashank Singh running through deep mid-wicket. With 30 runs needed off 14 balls, Hetmyer breathed life into the chase by pulling Harshal for four and backward square leg for six, then scored 14 runs in the 18th over.

Powell hit back-to-back drives on Curran’s ball. Before he was bounced out by the fast bowler, who edged Keshav Maharaj to long-on in the 19th over. When ten runs were needed in the final over, Arshdeep bowled back-to-back wide yorkers. Before this, Hetmyer hit a straight six on the long-on cushion. After a brace to long-on, Hetmyer sealed the win for RR by blocking a high full toss over fine leg for six runs.

Brief Score:

Punjab Kings 147/8 in 20 overs (Ashutosh Sharma 31, Jitesh Sharma 29, Keshav Maharaj 2-23, Avesh Khan 2-34) lost to Rajasthan Royals 152/7 in 19.5 overs (Yashaswi Jaiswal 39, Shimron Hetmyer 27 not out) ; Kagiso Rabada 2-18, Sam Curran 2-25) by three wickets.

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