They call AB de Villiers superman for a reason. He can win games from impossible situations. That’s what he did today to fire Royal Challengers Bangalore to a seven-wicket victory when Rajasthan Royals had the game in their bag.
Devdutt Padikkal (35 off 37 balls) and captain Virat Kohli (43 off 32) forged a 79-run partnership after the early fall of Aaron Finch. But those runs consumed a lot of deliveries and, to make matters worse, the two fell off consecutive deliveries.
When De Villiers walked in, Bangalore had a mountain to climb. With 74 required off 36 balls, the South African set about the task and slammed a hat-trick of sixes in the 19th over, bowled by Jayadev Unadkat. The win was sealed there.
Earlier, a rejigged batting allowed Rajasthan to run up a total of 177/6 in 20 overs. Opener Robin Uthappa (41 runs off 22) lashed 50 with Ben Stokes, and later Jos Buttler (24 off 25) and skipper Steve Smith (57 off 36) built on it as Rajasthan posted a fighting total.
And they were in the game until De Villiers pulled off another Houdini act with 55 runs off 22 balls. It included 6 sixes.
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