Many fans were critical of RR team management after Tewatia was promoted in the batting order at No.4, ahead of Robin Uthappa, Riyan Parag and Jofra Archer.
Rajasthan Royals (RR) pulled off the highest run-chase in the IPL’s history to etch an iconic win against Kings XI Punjab at Sharjah. The highlight of the epic encounter turned out to be Rahul Tewatia blistering half-century in the end. Tewatia, after being promoted up the order during RR’s pursuit of a 223-run total, wasn’t struggling to even connect the ball initially.
The Haryana leggie was 8 off 19 balls at one stage but he pulled off something incredible in the latter phase of his inning. Putting his foot on the gas pedal, the southpaw slammed five sixes off Sheldon Cottrell in the 18th over and turned the tide completely in favour of Royals.
Tewatia’s spree left cricket fans in shock, especially witnessing his completely different avatar against the West Indies pacer. 27-year-old Tewatia earned huge praise from cricket fraternity for his 31-ball 53 and transformed into a hero from a villain in the shortest way possible.
RR skipper Steve Smith also heaps praise on Rahul Tewatia
Many fans were critical of RR team management after Tewatia was promoted in the batting order at No.4, ahead of Robin Uthappa, Riyan Parag and Jofra Archer. But Sanju Samson, who also slammed an impressive 42-ball 85 in the match, revealed the reason behind Tewatia’s promotion in the batting set-up.
“We had bought him as a leg-spinner but he showed his batting prowess in the camp. We had a competition about who can hit maximum sixes in six balls. There too, he had hit 4 or 5 sixes. The management decided then that he would be promoted in the batting order,” Samson said in a video shared by Indian Premier League’s official account.
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Royals, at one stage, were looking out of the equation as they needed 84 runs in the last five overs. But Samson’s carnage and Tewatia’s unexpected fireworks paved way for a consecutive victory in RR’s IPL 2020 voyage. The Royals are currently sitting second in the points table, having defeated CSK and KXIP in their last two matches. They will now take on Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on September 30 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
At the post-match presentation, RR skipper Steve Smith also revealed why Tewatia was pushed up the batting order. “What we have seen from Tewatia in the nets is what we saw in that Cottrell’s over. I told someone as along as he gets one, floodgates will open. He showed heart. He told me during the timeout we still believe,” said Smith.