Sanju Samson in action for Rajasthan Royals during IPL 2023© AFP
Sanju Samson started his Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 campaign with a brilliant half-century as Rajasthan Royals defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad comfortably on Sunday. Samson was the top-scorer for his side with a 32-ball-55 and he played a massive role in taking them to a solid total. In the process, Samson also made history by becoming the first batsman ever to score 700 runs against SRH. He was also the first one to score 600 against the 2016 champions with Virat Kohli in second place.
Rajasthan Royals made a rousing start to the IPL-16, thrashing Sunrisers Hyderabad by 72 runs.
Batting first, last season’s runners-up RR got off to a flier with T20 World Cup-winning England skipper Jos Buttler smacking 54 off 22 balls (7×4, 3×6).
Promising uncapped Indian Yashasvi Jaiswal made an identical 54 (37b; 9×4), while skipper Sanju Samson top-scored with 55 (32b; 3×4, 4×6) as RR posted season’s highest total of 203 for 5.
In reply, the home side managed 131 for 8 in the stipulated 20 overs.
For Sunrisers Hyderabad, T Natarajan (3-0-23-2) was the pick of the bowler and dragged the Royals back in a tidy penultimate over where he dismissed Samson and gave away just seven runs.
Left-arm Afghan pacer Fazalhaq Farooqi returned with 2 for 41 from his four overs.
In reply, the home side lost two wickets without opening the account with Trent Boult inflicting the double blow in the first over en route to his splendid figures of 4-1-21-2.
Thereafter, Indian wrist spinner Yuzvendra Chahal made hay in his 4-0-17-4 to have them reeling at 95 for 8.
Just when they looked to fold inside 100 runs, the Jammu and Kashmir duo of Adul Samad (32 not out; 32b) and Umran Malik (19 not out; 8b) produced some late fireworks to take them to a respectable 131 for 8.
(With PTI inputs)
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