Cricket

Gopal hat-trick in washout, RCB eliminated

Royal Challengers Bangalore 62 for 7 (Kohli 25, Gopal 3-12) and Rajasthan Royals 41 for 1 (Samson 28, Chahal 0-1) Match abandoned

Rain had the final say guiding a fast-paced five-over game into an anti-climactic no-result. And because of that, Royal Challengers Bangalore were the first team to be eliminated in IPL 2019.

Rajasthan Royals had opted to chase, well before the downpour began, and they were 22 runs off their target with 10 balls still left to play when another spell of rain lashed the M Chinnaswamy stadium, putting an end to the game.

Both teams took one point each and that meant Royals still have a chance of making the playoffs; good news for Shreyas Gopal at least, considering he took a hat-trick and all. The batsmen he dismissed, by the way, were Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Marcus Stoinis. That’s 40,832 international runs.

Kohli tees off

The first ball, delivered at 148kph by Varun Aaron, was crashed over the long-off boundary. Next ball, Kohli’s attempted slap over cover took the outside edge for another six. Twenty-three runs came off that first over and everyone was jolted awake after sitting around doing nothing for three hours. Kohli began the second over with a straight six off Gopal, and it looked as if the home crowd would get to enjoy a Kohli special.

Gopal to the rescue

But Gopal, who was already the danger man for RCB having bowled so well against them in his previous two outings, turned it around beautifully.

He first had Kohli caught at long-on for 35 off 7 balls, then he tricked AB de Villiers into mis-hitting one to cover and to press home the advantage, he removed Marcus Stoinis as well, caught at mid-off, to complete his first hat-trick in the IPL.

Royals keep it tight

RCB had raced to 50 in 3.2 overs but some excellent running around the outfield, cool heads under high catches and cunning changes of pace from the Royals bowlers ensured there were only 12 runs in the next 10 balls.

Riyan Parag had Gurkeerat Singh caught at deep midwicket in the third over before Parthiv Patel was caught at short fine leg off Jaydev Unadkat in the following over. Oshane Thomas finished off with two wickets in the last over.

Samson falls before rain

Sanju Samson and Livingstone gave the Royals a rousing start with 22 runs in the first two overs. Samson also hit Kulwant Khejroliya for 18 runs in the third over and it left the Royals needing 23 off 12 balls. Samson fell in the fourth over, but no sooner had he left the field that the rain returned and nullified what was turning out to be a fun game of cricket.

Article source: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/story/1182708.html?CMP=OTC-RSS

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