Rajasthan Royals (RR) on Tuesday defended a total against 3-time champion Chennai Super Kings (CSK) for first time in 10 years and en route registered a 16-run win to kick start their IPL 2020 campaign with a victory.
This was also RR’s second-highest winning margin in terms of runs. Team’s captain Steve Smith was naturally delighted on the spectacular performance of his boys. The Australian, especially heaped rich praises on Sanju Samson and Jofra Archer for their hitting prowess.
The high-scoring match saw as many as 33 sixes, including 3 consecutive sixes from CSK captain MS Dhoni in the final over the match.
In a rare instance, Steve Smith came to open the innings and scored an impressive 69 off 47 balls to set up the tone for Rajasthan Royals. Jos Buttler, the regular opener of the team couldn’t play the match because of the mandatory quarantine rules. When asked about his batting position, Smith said it was difficult to the the opening slot from Buttler.
“I think the last surge from Jofra was an incredible bit of hitting. Sanju Samson, looked like everything he hit went for six. MS (Dhoni) smacked a few in the end, and Faf (du Plessis) got going too, but nice to get a W in front of the RRs.
“Sanju was incredible, and all I had to do was give him the strike. This should give him a lot of confidence. Jos is a quality player and we’ll see what happens when he comes back. Hard to take the opening slot away from someone like him.
“It was important for the bowlers to avoid straight hits, and it was important to make him hit the back of a length. The leg-spinners were very good with their lengths – good on them. Shreyas Gopal does what he does pretty well. Dubai is a lot bigger, and I haven’t trained there, I just got here. So hopefully the boys are ready for it. Looking forward to it,” Steve Smith said in the post-match presentation ceremony.
Rajasthan Royals will next face Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on Sunday.
Also Read | RR vs CSK, IPL 2020: Sanju Samson, Steve Smith help Rajasthan Royals stun Chennai Super Kings