Rising Pune Supergiant broke their bank in the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction in February and shelled out Rs 14.5 Cr to acquire the services of all-rounder Ben Stokes. Now, it seems that the Englishman is slowing paying back the owners with his superb on-field displays.
Stokes picked up 3/18 in four overs to break the backbone of Royal Challengers Bangalore's batting line-up as RPS cruised to a 27-run victory at the Chinnaswamy stadium on Sunday.
Virat Kohli became Stokes' first dismissal of the day and proved to be the turning point of Bangalore's unsuccessful chase in the end. Stokes got the better of Kohli in his first over of the day itself and he was dismissed for 28 of 19 balls.
The all-rounder bowled a brilliant bouncer to Kohli, which he tried to flat-bat down on the ground, but the ball took a top edge and was easily caught by Ajinjya Rahane few meters inside the boundary rope.
Stokes then got rid of Shane Watson who was starting to look dangerous in the chase. While Kiwi Adam Milne became his third scalp of the day.
However, it was not just his wickets, but Stokes was very economical as well, as he gave away just 18 runs in four overs. Stokes also bowled as many as 13 dot balls which helped Pune to strangulate the RCB batsmen during the middle overs.