Indian Premier League 2020 | Ben Stokes hundred gives Royals much-needed win over Mumbai

Jofra Archer of Rajasthan Royals takes a brilliant one-handed catch at the boundary to dismiss Ishan Kishan of Mumbai Indians during Indian Premier League (IPL) match between the Rajasthan Royals and the Mumbai Indians, at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Ben Stokes knows a thing or two about playing stunning knocks. He came up with one (107 not out, 60b, 14x4, 3x6) on Sunday at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium to power Rajasthan Royals to a crushing eight-wicket victory over table-topper Mumbai Indians, with eight balls to spare, chasing a daunting 195.

The win also helped his team stay on in the race for a place in the playoffs.

Watching the recently converted opener complete his second IPL hundred with a huge six over mid-wick off James Pattinson, and then hitting the winning boundary off the next ball, from the other end was Sanju Samson (54 not out, 31b, 4x4, 3x6).

The duo added 152 for the unfinished third wicket. Samson had joined Stokes in the fifth over when captain Steven Smith played on to fellow-Australian James Pattinson, who had already sent back Robin Uthappa.

From then on, it was a relentless leather chase for the Mumbai fielders, as Stokes and Samson showed how to chase a stiff target without too many risks.

They batted sensibly, ran exceptionally well between the wickets and kept the asking rate within control. They played some lovely shots, too.

Stokes had been criticised for not scoring briskly enough at the top of the order, while Sanju had been accused of giving away his wicket too easily.

Nobody could have complained about them on this night.

Earlier, a savage 60 not out off just 21 balls from Hardik Pandya (2x4, 7x6) gave a strong finish to the Mumbai innings, which had lost momentum in the middle.

From the last four overs, Mumbai plundered 74 runs. The heist was started by Saurabh Tiwary (34, 25b, 4x4, 1x6), who took 17 off Jofra Archer  in the 17th over.

That was only an aberration for the champion bowler, who came back in his next over to dismiss Tiwary and conceded only three runs.

But, at the other end, seamers were getting smashed all around the park by Hardik, who gave a splendid exhibition of power hitting. Ankit Rajpoot and Kartik Tyagi went for 27 apiece in the last two overs as Hardik took Mumbai to a formidable total.

It certainly must have been more than the team would have hoped for when it lost its second wicket, as Ishan Kishan (37, 36b, 4x4, 1x6) fell to a brilliant one-handed catch – leaping in the air – by Archer near the third man boundary. The opener had added 83 for the second wicket with Suryakumar Yadav (40, 26b, 4x4, 1x6), who became the first of the two batsmen caught in the deep by Stokes.

There was, of course, more to come from Stokes.


Rajasthan Royals: Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson(w), Jos Buttler, Steven Smith(c), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Kartik Tyagi.

Mumbai Indians : Quinton de Kock(w), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Saurabh Tiwary, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard(c), Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah.

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Printable version | Dec 3, 2020 5:16:32 PM |

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