IPL

IPL: Kumar the hero as Sunrisers stun Royals for final-ball win

By Sports Desk May 02, 2024

Bhuvneshwar Kumar was the hero as Sunrisers Hyderabad came back from the brink to secure a final-ball win over Indian Premier League leaders Rajasthan Royals on Thursday.

Kumar left the Royals reeling at 1-2 as they chased 202 for victory, dismissing both Jos Buttler and Sanju Samson for first-over ducks, flattening middle wicket to send the latter walking five balls in.

A 127-run partnership between Yashasvi Jaiswal and Riyan Parag then seemed to have the Royals closing in on a fifth straight win, only for their chase to unravel in spectacular fashion. 

Two wickets apiece from Thangarasu Natarajan and Pat Cummins left the Royals needing 20 runs off 11 balls, and Rovman Powell came up with a thrilling cameo, the highlight being an unbelievable dive to avoid being run out on the penultimate delivery, which took Rajasthan within two runs of victory and one of a super over.

However, there was one more twist to come as Powell swung at Kumar's full toss, which clipped his back leg and was confirmed as out following a review, sealing a memorable win for Sunrisers.

The Sunrisers had also found themselves in a hole in their own innings, only for Nitish Kumar Reddy (76) and Heinrich Klaasen (42) to finish unbeaten and bring up a total they were just about able to defend. 

Data Debrief: Kumar bookends back-and-forth innings

For much of the Rajasthan innings, it looked like Kumar's early dismissals of Buttler and Samson would count for nought, with some expensive overs from Cummins and Marco Jansen leaving the Royals on the brink.

However, Kumar stepped up when it was all on the line on the final delivery, leaving Powell in a tangle to end Hyderabad's two-match losing streak and lift them into the top four. 

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