Jos Buttler got Rajasthan Royals out from a precarious position of 28 for 3 chasing 126 and smashed an unbeaten 70 off 48 balls to help them beat Chennai Super Kings by seven wickets.
Buttler began the tournament as an opener and has been batting in the middle order in the last two matches. The Englishman said he was happy to bat wherever the team needs.
“Nice to get a win on the board tonight. I tried to come out with some intensity in my batting. I didn’t think I had enough last game, and I decided to take a few more options tonight, and it came off,” he explained after receiving the Man of the Match award. “You have to keep trusting yourself and particularly when there’s no scoreboard pressure, you can play yourself in and let cut loose in the end.
“I’m happy to do whatever the team needs to me do. This is my role for now (middle order) and I’m glad to do it.”
Steven Smith, the RR captain, hailed the legspinners Shreyas Gopal and Rahul Tewatia, who combined for only 32 runs in their eight overs picking up two wickets.
“Sharjah is a little different from here,” he said. “The wicket was stopping, not the best for batting, and good to be on the winning side. I thought we bowled well in the powerplay. The spinners bowled good lengths, with the googlies and leggies, building a lot of pressure. Tewatia and Shreyas have been sensational for us.
“Buttler took the pressure off me. I just knocked it around, and he just batted the way he usually does. He always maintains a good strike-rate. I didn’t know I’d nicked the ball (in an lbw call off Hazlewood), I was walking back but I was relieved to see that I had.”