Ahmedabad, May 28 – India batting legend Sachin Tendulkar pointed out that Royal Challengers Bangalore pacer Mohammed Siraj missed a trick by not bowling an outswinger against Rajasthan Royals opener Jos Buttler during the Qualifier 2 on Friday.
Chasing 159, Buttler was cautious but opened up by taking 14 runs off just four balls from Siraj to cruise to his fourth century of IPL 2022, an unbeaten 106 off 60 balls to set up Rajasthan’s date with Gujarat Titans in the final at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Sunday.
“Yashasvi’s explosive start gave Buttler some breathing space. Buttler was batting on 6 after 7 balls. After that, he targeted Siraj as he knew the bowler was leaking runs. I think Siraj missed a trick against Buttler. He did not bowl a proper outswinger. He was bowling in-cutters with an angled seam and cross-seamed deliveries. He could have tried a regulation outswinger,” said Tendulkar in a video on his Youtube channel on Saturday.
Buttler had entered Qualifier 2 on the back of an indifferent run despite three centuries in the first half of the tournament. But on Friday, Buttler was literally unstoppable, carting bowlers all around the park for another century which also brought up his 800 runs in the tournament. “When Buttler gets going, it’s a joy to watch as something happens on every ball. He is unpredictable and a 360-degree player, he hit at fine leg, third man, long-on, and cover point. There was not one area where he did not hit a shot. (He displayed) brilliant bat swing and footwork.”
“He also built a good partnership with Sanju (Samson) when Rajasthan needed it. Overall, when Rajasthan had fifty in 4.3 overs, the game was more or less over. Though Bangalore picked two, three wickets, Buttler didn’t let the game slip away from Rajasthan. It’s a joy to watch Buttler dominate like this; thoroughly enjoyed his innings,” remarked Tendulkar.
Tendulkar also noted that Rajasthan pacer Prasidh Krishna had beaten talismanic batter Virat Kohli with a ball that bounced and was at the fifth stump line on a pitch that had some zip for him. “When the ball is moving only one way, it is easy to leave deliveries. However, one of the balls came back in and hit Virat on the thigh. Batters then think, ‘It’s coming in too. I can’t leave balls’. Prasidh’s follow-up delivery (wicket ball) was very good. Virat was beaten by the bounce and the ball moved a little away off the wicket. That was a fantastic delivery.”
Tendulkar signed off by saying that apart from Krishna’s 3/22, left-arm pacer Obed McCoy was good for Rajasthan at the back end with 3/23. “Along with Prasidh, McCoy was the key bowler. Both kept Bangalore under pressure. Prasidh dismissed Karthik, who had been batting very well down the order with a good strike rate and followed it up with a brilliant delivery to Hasaranga. To me, 157 wasn’t a great total at all on this surface, more runs were needed.”