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Top Performer: Riyan Parag

By SHAILESH KARKERA
April 27, 2022 08:19 IST
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Riyan

IMAGE: Rajasthan Royal's Riyan Parag top scored with 56* off 31 balls against the Royal Challengers Bangalore. Photograph: BCCI
 

Rajasthan Royals moved up to the top of the IPL 2022 standings with an impressive 29 run win over the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the MCA stadium in Pune on Tuesday, April 26, 2022.

Top scoring for Rajasthan was youngster Riyan Parag who hit a 31 ball 56* which included three fours and four sixes.

It was the lowest total defended successfully this season, making it the sixth time in seven attempts that RR have successfully defended a total.

Initially, RCB's decision putting Rajasthan in to bat paid immediate dividends when Devdutt Paddikal departed in the second over and later Ravichandran Ashwin, playing in what seemed like an experimental pinch-hitter's role was dismissed in the fourth to make it 33-2.

Sanju Samson and David Mitchell came in and steadied the ship for a while before the skipper was dismissed while attempting an irresponsible reverse sweep which resulted in him being bowled by Wanindu Hasaranga in the 10th over, which brought Parag to the crease.

From 69-6 at the end of 10 overs, Parag orchestrated a revival of sorts as the Royals added 75 runs in the final 10 of which 56 were from his bat.

He started off by his innings in style, dispatching Shahbaz Ahmed for a six and a four in the 11th over following which there was a lean patch where Parag and Mitchell kept the scoreboard ticking with a flurry of singles.

Following Mitchell's departure in the 15th and subsequently Shimron Hetmyer two overs later, the onus was on Parag to see his team through till the end, which he did with some style in the final two overs of the game.

Riyan

IMAGE: Riyan Parag celebrates his fifty against RCB. Photograph: BCCI

After Josh Hazlewood was smacked for a six and a four in the penultimate over, Harshal Patel was at the receiving end of a fiery final over which included another four and two sixes.

'During the time-out, Sanga (RR Head Coach Kumar Sangakkara) came out and we agreed that 140 was a good total on this wicket,' Parag explained in his post game interview. 'We decided to go big in the last two overs. I wanted to target Hasaranga in his second over, but we lost wickets, and so I had to strategise and go after Hazlewood and Harshal.'

It was a mature and intelligent batting performance from the 21 year old, one made all the better with him taking three catches in the second half of the game in defence of his team's modest total.

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