New ball bowlers generally have the onus of drawing the first blood for their teams. In T20 cricket, the no. of balls for a new ball bowler to make an impact is comparatively low. In the match between Gujarat Lions and Rising Pune Supergiant, Lions put Supergiant in to bat.
Praveen Kumar was given the new ball by his captain, Suresh Raina. Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi were opening the batting for Pune. Rahane was at the striker’s end. Kumar bowled two out swinging deliveries to Rahane which he willingly left outside the off stump.
To deceive Rahane, Kumar bowled the third one into the batsman. Rahane was tentative and went for the cut. The ball flew off his outside edge to Raina, who was standing at wide slip. A chance which would have been a sitter for a genuine first slip, was flying quick past Raina. It was the time when he put out his left hand and fortunately the ball stuck to his hand.
Raina’s expressions displayed that he was amazed with himself. Such was the quality of the catch. In a situation where Kumar was successful in drawing the first blood, he was equally helped by his captain. Raina was an exemplary of the captain leading from the front.
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— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 14, 2017
Featured image source: iplt20.com (screen grab)
Video Credits – IPL.