Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) emerged victorious by 5 wickets against Gujarat Lions (GL) in match 39 of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017. This was their first win over the Gujarat Lions in four games. Also, this was the first time Rising Pune Supergiant bowled out an opposition. With this win, they remain at No. 4 in IPL 2017 points table. If they win 3 of 4 remaining contests, they will certainly book a place in the playoffs. Given this is their last edition, they will leave no stone unturned to reach the penultimate stage of the tournament. Let us have a look at the top highlights. Full cricket scorecard: RPS vs GL, IPL 2017, Match 39
Kishan, the dynamite: When Ishan Kishan decided to take the bowlers to cleaners, Brendon McCullum was reduced to playing supporting role. In his 31-run cameo, the southpaw boomed 3 fours and 2 sixes. However, his superlative skills are not limited to batting. Kishan, by all means, is a valiant fielder. Throughout the IPL, Kishan has taken a few blinders impressing all and sundry with his athleticism. In addition, he saves certain boundaries standing in the deep. Full cricket scorecard: RPS vs GL, IPL 2017, Match 39
McCullum, the balle-baz: McCullum walks out to bat, shimmies down, sends a few soaring over the boundary line, gets out. A new day dawns. McCullum walks out to bat, shimmies down, sends a few soaring over the boundary line, gets out. Neither he nor his batsmanship has changed. If anything, he betters as he ages. Even in the field, he still continues being a livewire. In Pune, he displayed his ‘A’ game. He scored 45 off 27, followed by a spectacular catch off MS Dhoni’s bat at long-off.
Three’s haul for Unadkat, Tahir: Jaydev Unadkat and Imran Tahir took a 3-wicket haul each. In fact, Tahir was on a hat-trick, dismissing Aaron Finch and Dwayne Smith off consecutive deliveries. On the other hand, Unadkat removed James Faulkner, Pradeep Sangwan, and Ankit Soni.
The Big 3 fail: Ajinkya Rahane, Steven Smith, and Manoj Tiwary were back in the dugout within the first 9 balls of the innings. They meagrely added 10 runs combined.
Dhoni stutters, but eventually delivers: At one point Dhoni was batting at less than run a ball. The run rate bloated above 12 RPO. Dhoni, instead, recognised the need of the hour. He let Stokes drop the anchor, making sure at least one of them stays at the crease. However, Dhoni could not get enough elevation off a half-tracker and holed out to McCullum, scoring a vital 26.
Stokes makes full use of INR 14.5 crores: Stokes had gone for the highest bid in IPL 2017 auction. With the likes of Steven Smith, Dhoni, Faf du Plessis already in their arsenal, the owners went for the English all-rounder. A little more than a year ago, he was diminished in the finale of ICC World T20 2016. Playing in his maiden IPL, Stokes clubbed his maiden hundred: 103* off 63. He scored 62 per cent of team’s total while chasing. He smoked 7 fours and 6 sixes.