The Gujarat Titans (GT) marched into the finals of the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 campaign with a 7-wicket win over the Rajasthan Royals (SRH) on Tuesday at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
David Miller stepped up to the challenge and scored an unbeaten 68*(38) which powered Gujarat Titans to a successful chase and a place in the finals.
Chasing 189 for a place in the finals, GT lost Wriddhiman Saha’s wicket in the first over after the wicket-keeper batter was caught behind off Trent Boult’s bowling.
Matthew Wade and Shubman Gill negated the pressure of an early wicket as Wade was in attacking mode after smacking five fours at the top.
Gill took Ashwin to the cleaners after the opener clubbed two fours and a six as GT were placed at 64-1 at the end of the powerplay.
A confusion in the middle led to the run-out of Shubman Gill which brought an end to the dangerous-looking partnership.
Skipper Hardik Pandya was out in the middle but GT lost another wicket after Wade holed out to the deep off Obed McCoy’s bowling. David Miller joined skipper Hardik in the middle as GT were 97-3 at the 10-over mark.
RR added pressure after conceding only 17 runs in the next three overs. Pandya played a release shot against Ashwin while Miller dispatched his first six as GT required 50 off the final five overs.
The 150 was up for GT as Miller and Pandya took calculated risks to get GT closer to the target. Miller whacked a maximum straight down the ground to bring the equation down to 23 off 12.
Miller reached his half-century in the penultimate over before the left-handed batter wrapped the chase with three sixes in the first three deliveries of the final over.
Earlier, RR were put in to bat first by GT. Jos Buttler was off the mark with two well-timed fours in the first over. However, RR lost Yashasvi Jaiswal’s wicket early after the opener was caught behind off Yash Dayal’s bowling.
Sanju Samson was immediately on the move after the RR skipper clobbered three sixes inside the powerplay and RR were 55-1 at the end of the six overs.
The fifty partnership was up between Samson and Buttler but Rashid Khan kept things tight from one end after conceding eight runs in his first two overs.
R Sai Kishore put an end to the partnership after Samson was caught at long-on for 47 and RR were placed at 79/2 at the 10-over mark.
Buttler was joined by Devdutt Padikkal, who cleared the ropes against Sai Kishore to bring up his first maximum as the duo kept the runs ticking. GT skipper Hardik Pandya provided the next breakthrough after Padikkal dragged the delivery on to the stumps.
The half-century was up for Buttler after the opener added four fours against Yash Dayal in the 17th over and was given a reprieve.
Buttler, with luck by his side, added three more fours in the 18th over while Shimron Hetmyer was caught in the deep in the next over, bowled by Shami.
Buttler was run-out in the final over, not before the RR opener hammered a six each against Shami and Yash Dayal. A confusion in the middle led to the run-out of Riyan Parag before RR reached to 188/6 at the end of 20 overs.
Brief Scores: Gujarat Titans 191/3 (David Miller 62*, Hardik Pandya 40*; Trent Boult 1-38) beat Rajasthan Royals 188/6 (Jos Buttler 89, Sanju Samson 47; Hardik Pandya 1-14) by 7 wickets.