Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) narrowly edged-past Mumbai Indians (MI) in Match No. 28 of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 at the Wankhede Stadium on Monday. Setting a target of 161 runs, RPS’ combined bowling effort saw them beat MI by just 3 runs. After skipper Steven Smith praised Jaydev Unadkat in the post-match presentation, RPS’ batting mainstay Ajinkya Rahane spilled out the main reason why Unadkat was chosen over Shardul Thakur. With MI needing 17 to win in the final over and with Rohit Sharma in the middle, Unadkat gave just 13 runs and picked up two wickets to seal the game in Pune’s favour. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS), IPL 10 Match 28
Rahane, speaking in the post-match press conference, said, “Ya, I think after the 19th over when Smith, Mahi bhai and I were discussing, we talked about bowling Shardul or Jaydev. But we opted to bowl Jaydev because Shardul has a lot of pace, and we wanted to take the pace off and not give the batsmen any in the last over.”
He elaborated, “JD’s pace comparatively is slower than Shardul and his slower ball could’ve been more effective as the wicket was slow. We did not want to give them any pace because Rohit was already set.”
Unadkat’s last over also had its fair share of controversy after the umpire did not call a seeming far delivery wide. Rahane found nothing wrong in the decision saying, “I think it was the right call.”
MI skipper Rohit Sharma, who was still out in the middle, was seemingly unhappy with the call and was seen arguing with the on-field umpire. Rahane, his teammate at Mumbai and India, approved of Rohit’s behaviour in the middle.
“As a batsman, when you move, that area goes to the bowler. Rohit’s behaviour at that point was natural. As a captain, as a player, when the game is so close, it comes automatically; nobody thinks these things through and then do them. I do not think it was wrong on his part. It happens on the field and remains on the field. It is part and parcel of the game. In this format, in close games, this will happen in the future as well. You should respect the umpire’s decision as well as what Rohit did. It was natural,” he added.
Speaking about his own show with the bat, Rahane said, “Really happy at the moment the way I am batting. It is important to spend time in the middle but right now the way I am middling the ball, timing the ball I am really happy at the moment. As long as we are winning the match that is what is important to me and for our team.”