• Tahir, Ferguson throttle RCB’s playoff hopes

    Imran Tahir took 3-18 as the Rising Pune Supergiant handed the Royal Challengers Bangalore their seventh defeat on Saturday.

    The Rising Pune Supergiant were sent in to bat by Virat Kohli and they set an average target of 158 runs.

    Good starts from Rahul Tripathi (37 off 28 balls) and Steve Smith (45 off 32 deliveries) saw RPS push past the 100-mark, but a scalp apiece by Pawan Negi and Stuart Binny set the hosts back at 108-3 (13.5 overs).

    MS Dhoni (44 off 35) joined Manoj Tiwary (21 off 17) as the pair put on a 49-run partnership to see out the 20 overs.

    Badree (1-31), Negi (1-18) and Binny (1-17) were the only wicket-takers for RCB as they restricted RPS to 157-3.

    RCB would have preferred a win, despite mathematically still having a chance for a playoff spot with victories in their remaining games.

    With Chris Gayle left out of the lineup, RCB suffered another batting collapse, with Kohli struggling on his own to keep his side’s innings together.

    Despite reaching a hard-fought half-century off 42 balls (four fours and one six), the rest of the batting lineup crumbled around their captain.

    Jaydev Unadkat (1-19) struck first, knocking over Travis Head (2), followed by AB de Villiers (3), who was dismissed by the Man of the Match Lockie Ferguson (2-7).

    Kedar Jadhav’s run-out added more misery to RCB’s struggles when Washington Sundar (1-7) took the fourth and Ferguson the fifth, as the visitors found themselves on 48 in 9.5 overs.

    In stepped Tahir and he took the next three, followed by Daniel Christian, who put RCB in checkmate by removing Kohli on the second last ball of the 18th over.

    ALSO READ: Tahir spins Supergiant to victory

    Kohli was evidently frustrated and the ninth wicket to fall, with the game all but over at 84-9 with 13 balls remaining.

    Needing 66 runs to win off the final ball, the game fizzled out as RCB suffered a heavy 61-run defeat, their dreadful IPL season continuing.

    In Rajkot, the Gujarat Lions posted 153-9 in their 20 overs. Krunal Pandya took 3-14 for the Mumbai Indians, despite a good start by 18-year-old Ishan Kishan, who fell two runs short of his half-century.

    For MI, Parthiv Patel gave his side a great start by scoring 70 off 44 balls, but quick wickets from GL saw the hosts nervously reduced to 109-4. James Faulkner (2-34) took two scalps, including the wicket of Patel, as the game swung in the hosts’ favour.

    With MI on 139-5 and 15 off 12 needed, Basil Thampi (3-29) was responsible for three wickets in the 19th over, taking two and causing a run-out as MI needed 11 off six balls to win.

    Despite another run-out off the third ball, Krunal Pandya (29) brought the game to 1 off 1 delivery as a direct hit by Ravindra Jadeja tied the match.

    The MI’s super over saw Pollard smash four and a six, and then Faulkner struck twice as MI posted 11-2 off five deliveries and conceded the last ball.

    Brilliant bowling from 23-year-old Jasprit Bumrah throttled the hosts to 7 off the final ball, despite conceding a no-ball, a wide and a bye, as MI emerged victorious.

    RPS vs RCB scorecard

    GL vs MI scorecard

    Photo: BCCI/Cricinfo

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