One of the most difficult jobs in T20 cricket is finishing a game. We have seen many times that teams fail to finish the job even when the game is in their hand. That’s why players like MS Dhoni and AB De Villiers are legends because they understand the art of finishing a job.
Many times, it gets really tight and teams need to hit a boundary or a six off the last ball to win the game. There is so much pressure on the batsman because he has to clear the fence. Not many people have done the job of finishing a game on the last ball with a six. So, let’s have a look at the five Indians who have done that job in the IPL.
5. Ambati Rayudu vs KKR 2011
Mumbai Indians were playing against Kolkata Knight Riders in 2011. KKR had scored 175/7 in their 20 overs. Chasing 176, MI reached a stage where they needed 21 runs off the last over with Lakshimpathy Balaji to bowl. The first four balls went for boundaries and the equation changed to 5 off 2 balls. James Franklin who had hit four boundaries took a single and MI needed four off the last ball to win the game. Ambati Rayudu who had scored 11 off 5 balls up till now was on strike and he smashed a six over deep square leg. A last-ball six sealed it for Rayudu and MI.
4. Saurabh Tiwary vs PWI 2012
Royal Challengers Bangalore were up against Pune Warriors India in 2012. Chasing 183, RCB looked out of the game but Chris Gayle hit five sixes in one over to turn the game. It was still a difficult task as they needed 21 off the last over with Ashish Nehra to bowl. AB De Villiers played some exotic shots to bring it down to three off the last ball with Saurabh Tiwary on strike. The left-handed Tiwary who had been bought for a huge price in the auction hit a last-ball six over long-on to finish off the game for RCB.
3. Ravindra Jadeja vs KKR 2020
Ravindra Jadeja did it recently against Kolkata Knight Riders in a crucial encounter for KKR. CSK looked out of the game when Lockie Ferguson bowled a no-ball and the free hit went for a six. The equation came down to 10 off the last over with Kamlesh Nagarkoti to bowl. Kamlesh started off well as he gave away only 3 runs in his first four balls. Seven runs were required off 2 balls when Jadeja smashed two huge sixes which put a huge dent in KKR’s chances in IPL 2020.
2. MS Dhoni vs KXIP 2016
Rising Pune Supergiant was up against Kings XI Punjab in a battle to avoid the wooden spoon. It turned out to be a cracker of the game as RPS needed 23 off the last over with Axar Patel to bowl. Dhoni, who is the best finisher the game has ever seen didn’t get the big hits at the start of the over and they needed 12 off the last two balls. Dhoni smashed two sixes against Axar Patel which resulted in KXIP ending in the last position and RPS just avoiding the last spot.
1. Rohit Sharma vs KKR 2009, vs PWI 2011, vs DC 2012
Rohit Sharma seems to be the master of finishing a game with six on the last ball. The Indian opener has done it thrice in the history of the IPL. He did it for the first time against KKR when he smashed Mashrafe Mortaza for a last-ball six while playing for Deccan Chargers in 2009. He did it once again but this time while playing for Mumbai Indians against Pune Warriors India when he smashed Murali Karthik off the last ball to seal the deal. He did it the third time against his old team – Deccan Chargers. MI needed 18 runs off the last over and Rohit Sharma smashed a six, got a couple of runs, and smashed a six off the last three balls to seal the deal against the bowling of Dan Christian. Rohit Sharma might do it one more time and it might be in the playoffs of this IPL.