Rahul Tewatia was the star of the dressing room after his sensational innings helped Rajasthan Royals complete the Indian Premier League’s highest-ever run chase against Kings XI Punjab on Sunday.
Tewatia, a leg-spin bowler and left-hand batsman, overcame a difficult start and smashed five sixes in one over as he made 53 off 31 balls to chase 224 with four wickets and three balls to spare in Sharjah. Captain Steve Smith hit a quickfire 50 and Sanju Samson top-scored with 85 before Tewatia took the Royals to within one run of Kings XI’s 223/2.
He finally fell to paceman Mohammed Shami on the last ball of the 19th over but Jofra Archer, unbeaten on 13, and Tom Curran, who hit the winning boundary, saw the Royals home.
In a clip of the reactions of the dressing room after the match, the Indian received the traditional Rajasthani ‘pagdi’ from his team. He passed it on to Samson, who scored his second half-century in this IPL.
He was also seen mimicking Sheldon Cottrell’s salute celebration. Tewatia smashed the West Indies quick for five sixes - four in a row - in the 18th over to turn the tables
“Lots of good performances especially from the bowlers and how they came back, Ankit Rajpoot especially in his first game... it was hard for the bowlers to bowl at death. But the pagdi goes to Sanju Samson for an incredible innings,” Tewatia, who earned special praise from Smith, said.
Samson, on his part, passed it on to passed on to Ankit Rajpoot, for being the pick of the bowlers and the only one with an economy under 10 in a run fest. He also took the wicket of Rahul on 69.
“Sensational effort, Sanju again another incredible innings man. Tewatia obviously after a bit of a shaky start... you should have got the game changer award for sure,” Smith said in the video.
Watch the full video here