Rajasthan Royals' Devdutt Padikkal plays a shot
Rajasthan Royals' Devdutt Padikkal plays a shot during the IPL match against Punjab Kings at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamsala on May 19, 2023. Image Credit: AFP

Dharamsala: Devdutt Padikkal, Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shimron Hetmyer starred as Rajasthan Royals dumped Punjab Kings out of the IPL on Friday, capping a poor season for the league's most expensive ever player Sam Curran.

The nail-biting four-wicket win in Dharamsala gave Rajasthan hope of qualifying for the knockout phase of the competition although their fate depends on other matches this weekend.

Curran, who cost Punjab a hefty $2.23 million, fell one run short of what would have been only his second 50 of the tournament as Punjab put on 187-5 with Navdeep Saini taking 3-40 for Rajasthan.

In reply for the Royals, Curran's England teammate Jos Buttler fell for his latest duck of his lacklustre season, caught leg-before to a vicious inswinger by Kagiso Rabada.

But Jaiswal, the IPL's second-highest run scorer this year behind Faf du Plessis, and who last week hit a 13-ball 50, continued in his stellar form with yet another half-century.

Rajasthan captain Sanju Samson fell for just two to Rahul Chahar but rock-solid Devdutt Padikkal made 51 before falling to a stunning catch on the circle by Harpreet Brar off Arshdeep Singh.

Shimron Hetmyer almost saw the Royals home in a tense final phase that saw the West Indian exchange sharp words with Curran when he was given out caught behind, only to be reprieved on review.

Hetmyer finally departed for 46 off 28 but he and Riyan Parag (20) had done enough, with impact player Dhruv Jurel (10) finishing the job with a six off Rahul Chahar with two balls remaining.

Brief scores:
Punjab Kings 187/5 in 20 overs (Sam Curran 49, Shahrukh Khan 41 not out; Navdeep Saini 3-40) lost to Rajasthan Royals 189/6 in 19.4 overs (Yashasvi Jaiswal 50, Devdutt Padikkal 51, Shimron Hetmyer 46; Kagiso Rabada 2-40) by four wickets.