Jos Buttler struck a 36-ball 52 but Rajasthan Royals lost their way against a Ravindra Jadeja-led disciplined bowling performance by Chennai Super Kings to get restricted for a below-par 175/8 in 20 overs in Match 17 of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 here on Wednesday.
Buttler and Devdutt Padikkal (38) helped Rajasthan Royals blast 57/1 in Power-play and take them to 87/1 in ninth over but Jadeja claimed two wickets -- getting Padikkal and Rajasthan skipper Sanju Samson (0) in quick succession on a pitch that offered turn and bounce as CSK fought back to take control of the match. Chennai's rookie pacer Akash Singh, who claimed his first two wickets in IPL for 40 runs and Tushar Deshpande bagged 2-37 as the hosts managed to restrict the once-galloping Royals.
Asked to bat first by Dhoni in his 200th match as CSK skipper, the Rajasthan Royals innings developed in a stutter, smash, stutter mode as they lost Yashasvi Jaiswal (10) early with 11 runs on the board. They raced to 57/1 at the end of the Power-play and looked like cruising towards a huge total with Buttler and Padikkal going great guns.
Both Buttler and Padikkal went after the bowling with Padikkal smashing Maheesh Theekshana for two successive fours in the third over. They then hammered the Sri Lankan for 17 runs in the fifth over with Buttler smacking him for a six and four while Padikkal hit a beautifully-driven boundary. Padikkal also struck Tushar Deshpande for back-to-back fours in the sixth over while Buttler bashed his England teammate Moeen Ali for successive sixes in the eighth over.
But Chennai Super Kings applied the breaks with Ravindra Jadeja claiming two quick wickets. He made the breakthrough for CSK by getting Padikkal to top-edge to deep backward square leg as he attempted to sweep one that pitched outside the off-stump. Padikkal scored 38 off 26 balls, hitting five boundaries.
And when the left-arm spinner got Royals skipper Sanju Samson for a two-ball duck, getting him with a brilliant delivery faster one that straightened after pitching on middle and turned to beat the outside edge and crashed into the off-stump.
The going for very slow for the Royals as Buttler, who was galloping earlier became cautious, while R Ashwin, dropped by Moeen Ali off the first ball he faced, initially struggle to get the ball away as Rajasthan Royals managed to reach 95/3 at the halfway mark and were 119/3 at the end of the 14th over in which Ashwin managed to hit Theekshana for his first four.
Ashwin tried to shore up the scoring rate by smacking debutant Akash Singh for back-to-back sixes but the bowler had the last laugh as he got Ashwin out, attempting to heave a length delivery over mid-off but ends up skying it for Magala to take a simple catch.
Buttler completed his half-century off 33 balls but was out soon, sent packing his teammate Moeen Ali for 52 off 36 balls, hitting one four and three sixes.
Simron Hetmyer hammered an 18-ball unbeaten 30, hitting two fours and two sixes but the quick dismissals of Dhruv Jurel (4) and Jason Holder (0) meant, Rajasthan Royals managed to reach a below-par score.
Rajasthan Royals 175/8 in 20 overs (Jos Buttler 52, Devdutt Padikkal 38, R Ashwin 30, Shimron Hetmyer 30 not out; Ravindra Jadeja 2-21, Tushar Deshpande 2-37, Akash Singh 2-40) against Chennai Super Kings.