Kings XI Punjab changed their name to Punjab Kings after 2020 but they forgot to buy a player in the name of Rahul Tewatia who turned back the clock once again against them albeit this time for Gujarat Titans.
In 2020, in the 9th match at the iconic Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Rajasthan Royals were chasing 223 against Punjab and were down and out with 51 required to win of the last three overs. At the crease was a bloke named Rahul Tewatia who was struggling to get the ball out of the park where sixes were hit for fun by every batsman.
Tewatia was on 7 of 16 balls and all the cameras were panning at the dugout of Rajasthan as to who took the decision to send Tewatia to bat ahead of Robin Uthappa at number 4. Tewatia was becoming the villain of the match till then and was trolled all over the social media for not getting out and eating up balls. Sanju Samson had just got out and it looked all over for Rajasthan. Then came the 18th over of the match which was bowled by Sheldon Cottrell.
The first two deliveries were swung on to the leg side for six by Tewatia. The third ball was pitched up on the off but there was no stopping Tewatia and he hit it for another six. The fourth ball again disappeared for six on the leg side and Tewatia looked a different batsman. He missed the fifth ball but hit the sixth ball over midwicket for another six to hit 30 runs of that over of poor Cottrell. The rest was history as Tewatia scored 53 of 31 balls after being at one stage at 7 of 16 balls to win the game for his franchise Rajasthan. He became an overnight sensation, people who were trolling him started saying the line “Remember the Tewatia”.
If that was spectacular, what Tewatia did yesterday against Punjab again was redeeming himself again. He was clobbered for 25 runs by Liam Livingston in his only over bowled by him. He came in to bat in the last over when his new franchise Gujarat required 18 of the last five balls. The bowler was another West Indian in the name of Odean Smith. He got a single of the first ball he faced and gave the strike to David Miller. Miller did hit a boundary of the third ball but hit the fourth ball straight to the bowler and Tewatia was way out of the crease. Smith had a shy at the stumps but missed and back came on strike once again Rahul Tewatia, the name the whole Punjab had heard two years back. 12 required to win of two balls, the fifth ball from Smith was a length ball but outside the off stump. Tewatia somehow managed to clear the boundary by a whisker and it was six required of the last ball for a victory by the Titans.
Smith was clueless and missed his run up but Tewatia was calm as a cucumber. He knew where the last ball would be bowled by Smith which was once again wide outside the off stump. He walked across and nailed the slog sweep beyond long on to win yet another game from a losing position. Smith was on his heels but the Superman Tewatia was all pumped up like Superman who could pull off such shots with calmness like Dhoni.
Punjab lost yet another game from the grasp of a certain win but no surprises for the fans as on the crease was a red hot Tewatia whose second name is now “Dial Tewatia for a Six”.