TNPL 2018: S Suresh Kumar's late blitz seals a thrilling win for Ruby Trichy Warriors
The Tamil Nadu Premier League 2018 is off to a thrilling start as Ruby Trichy Warriors beat India off-spinner R Ashwin's Dindigul Dragons by four wickets in the inaugural match of the third edition at the ICL cricket ground in Tirunelveli.
Chasing 173 runs to win, the Warriors lost the wickets of skipper B Indrajith early before K Bharath Shankar hit some lusty blows to bring his team back in the game. Bharath, along with S Aravind, put together a 47-run partnership for the second wicket and looked good to take his team home at the half-way stage.
That was when they lost three wickets in quick succession and made things tough for themselves. First, it was Bharath, who was dismissed by Trilok Nag for 39 before R Ashwin and M Abhinav sent back C Ganapathy (5) and S Aravind (19) respectively to reduce them to 85/4 after 12 overs.
Late cameos from Sonu Yadav, who scored 30 off 17 balls, and S Suresh Kumar, who was unbeaten on 45 off 24 balls with the help of four fours and three sixes, took their team home with one ball to spare. The last seven overs were taken for 88 runs by the Trichy batsmen.
Earlier in the match, Ashwin won the toss and decided to bat first. After losing their opener N Jagadeesan early, Hari Nishaanth and R Rohit pulled things back by stitching together a 68-run stand for the second wicket off 44 balls. Hari was adjudged LBW for 41. Rohit and former Hyderabad batsman B Anirudh followed him to the pavilion soon after leaving skipper Ashwin and NS Chaturved to take their team to a good total.
Ashwin scored some crucial runs towards the end before he was out in the penultimate over for a 28-ball 42 with the help of six fours and one six. His cameo towards the end took his team to 172 for the loss of eight wickets in their 20 overs. For Trichy, MS Sanjay, D Tamil Kumaran and Lakshmi Narayanan took two wickets apiece for Warriors.
The turning point of the game: The sixth-wicket partnership of 60 runs off 31 balls between Sonu Yadav and S Suresh Kumar helped the Warriors come back into the match.
Brief scores: Ruby Trichy Warriors 175/6 after 19.5 overs (S Suresh Kumar 45*, K Bharath Shankar 39, Sonu Yadav 30, M Abhinav 1/10, R Ashwin 2/35) beat Dindigul Dragons (Hari Nishaanth 47, R Ashwin 42, R Rohit 41) by four wickets.
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