Each IPL match is an event. This season we have seen it all. From impossible chases to humiliating and heartbreaking chokes, IPL 2020 has had all the elements to impress its fans.
With all the thrill and fun fans have had over the last few weeks, this weekend’s games have elevated the season’s thrill.
Four games had gone into the final over of the chase. Four games had nail-biter finishes.
Four games were won by the team that kept their cool.
There was a mix of future and seasoned stars who were behind their side’s success.
From Ab De Villiers and Shikhar Dhawan to KL Rahul, there have been many performances to enjoy watching over the weekend.
Let us now look at each game and relive the thrill again.
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Nail-biting Weekend Game 1 Royal Challengers Bangalore vs. Rajasthan Royals:
The Rajasthan Royals batted first after winning the toss. They tried a new opening pair, with Uthappa coming up the order. The Royals got to 177, with Smith scoring a half-century and Uthappa returning to form with a quick 41.
In the second innings, Bangalore was hit by Finch’s wicket in the fourth over.
Kohli and Padikkal did well to steady the ship during the middle, but we’re striking at 100, which may have been a little slow.
With the run-rate rising, and Bangalore looking to take the game deep, the stage was set for Ab De Villiers to show why he is the superman.
Taking a few balls to get set, De Villiers kept RCB in the game, finding the boundary consistently till the 18th over.
With 35 to get off the final two overs, Ab De Villiers had given the fans a proper nail-biter.
Steve Smith gave the ball to Jaydev Unadkat for the 19th over, a questionable move as Archer had an over in hand.
Unadkat stood no chance against De Villiers as he hit three sixes off the first three deliveries while 25 came off the over.
With ten to defend for Archer, the game was still not out of hand. After five off the first three deliveries, Ab showed that he could take on the fastest in the world and hit him for six to clinch the nail-biter.
Nail-biting weekend game 2, Chennai Super Kings vs. Delhi Capitals:
The Delhi Capitals needed a win to go to the top of the table while the Chennai Super Kings needed a win to keep their campaign going.
CSK won the toss and chose to bat. They put 185 on the board thanks to a half-century from Faf Du Plessis and cameos from Ambati Rayudu and Ravindra Jadeja.
The Super Kings started the second innings well, picking up two early wickets.
The game seemed in their control until a steady partnership between Dhawan and Iyer put the match back in balance.
Dhawan, in particular, was looking fluent throughout his innings as he found the boundary with ease.
Along with Dhawan’s fluency, he was dropped a few times, which came back to haunt CSK.
The game was steady until a brilliant 19th over from Sam Curran left Delhi with 17 to finally get from the final.
With Dwayne Bravo injured, Ravindra Jadeja was given the final over in Sharjah.
In a match that shaped up to be a nail-biter and lived up to the hype, Axar Patel hit three sixes in a last-over assault to clinch the game.
The Delhi Capitals won the game with a delivery to spare while Dhawan made a spectacular century.
Nail-biter weekend game 3, Sunrisers Hyderabad vs. Kolkata Knight Riders:
The Knight Riders batting first made 163 runs. There were contributions from most players in the top-order while Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik did well to provide a strong finish.
The Sunrisers, in response, got off to a strong start in the powerplay. They pushed Williamson up to make use of the field restrictions as Williamson couldn’t run due to an injury.
The game was in Sunriser’s control until Ferguson turned it around with a beautiful spell to bring the Knight Riders back in the game.
With the game back in the Knight Riders control, David Warner decided to slow down and take the game deep while he found an aggressive partner in Abdul Samad.
Abdul Samad did well to score at a quick rate and kept Sunrisers in the game.
With an achievable required rate, the game was shifting towards the Sunrisers. The game was going towards Sunrisers while Russel was injured, saving the ball. The injury was a blow to the Knight Riders as he had been a crucial bowler for them in the end overs.
Despite the injury, Russel bowled the final over with a short run-up and slower pace. He had 18 to defend in the last over of a nail-biter. Restricted in movement, Russel conceded three boundaries in a row.
Russel bowled a good delivery with two needed off the final delivery, giving only one run and forcing a super over.
It was the first super over of the day, and the Sunrisers batting first sent Warner and Bairstow.
Lockie Ferguson, who picked up three wickets in the game, was trusted with the super over. He impressed with another two wickets, getting Warner and Samad bowled. His brilliance left the Knight Riders with just 3 to chase.
Morgan and Karthik walked out for the super over and finished off the job with ease completing another nail-biting game.
Nail-biter weekend game four: Kings XI Punjab vs. Mumbai Indians:
The final game of the weekend was indeed an unforgettable one. It is arguably one of the best games in IPL history and the most significant and most unexpected nail-biter of the weekend.
Mumbai came into the match second on the points table needing a win to take them to first.
Punjab was last and needed a win to keep their campaign alive.
Punjab was put into the field first after losing the toss.
Despite the early advantage for Mumbai, they lost early wickets, going three down within the powerplay.
Following the poor start, De Kock and Krunal Pandya fought back before an explosive finish by Pollard and Nathan Coulter Nile to get them to 176. 176 was an excellent score, and the game was again with Mumbai.
The second innings started with a strong start from Rahul, who looked to be aggressive from the start. He took apart Trent Boult and was in control of the chase. He had support from Chris Gayle and Nicholas Pooran, who played a quick innings to pull the game back to Punjab.
Rahul was in firm control of the chase and was taking the game closer and closer. He couldn’t see the game through, having been bowled by a fabulous yorker from Jasprit Bumrah to make a nail-biter more tensing.
The game had shifted back to Mumbai with that wicket, and it looked like Punjab was facing another defeat.
Chris Jordan and Deepak Hooda fought back well and took the chase to the last over. With nine needed off the last over, the game was again in Punjab’s favor.
Trent Boult bowled a tight over, conceding just one boundary, while a run-out off the final delivery took the nail-biter game to a super over. The second super over of the day and the first of the match.
The game had already seen many ups and downs. It was a nail-biter so far, with more to come.
Rahul and Pooran walked out for the super over, which was bowled by Bumrah. Bumrah bowled a tight over and picked up two wickets while Punjab could only manage five runs.
Rohit and De Kock then walked out to face Shami in what was thought to be an easy chase for Mumbai.
Shami surprised everyone, bowling yorker after yorker and again bought the game to a scenario where two were needed off the final ball.
With two needed, De Kock was run-out, resulting in a tie and another super over.
The second super over started with Mumbai batting first.
Pollard and Pandya walked out while Chris Jordan bowled.
It was an impressive over with two wides and a boundary by Pollard. Pandya was run-out off the fourth ball and it was the last ball, which was mind-blowing.
Nine runs made off the first five deliveries, and Pollard was on strike for the last one. Pollard went for a big hit over mid-wicket and connected well. The ball seemed like it would clear the fence but was pulled back brilliantly by Mayank Agarwal to keep the batsmen two.
With twelve required off the over and Trent Boult bowling, Mayank Agarwal and the Universe Boss walked out to the middle.
Questions on whether Gayle was the right choice for the super over as he is not too quick between the wickets. He was quick to answer those questions by hitting a massive six off the first ball.
The six was enough to push the game back to Punjab as Mayank Agarwal went on to hit two more boundaries clinching the tightest of nail-biters.