Cricket

CSK Vs RCB, IPL 2024: Bangladesh Star Mustafizur Rahman Rocks Royal Challengers Bengaluru

Mustafizur Rahman conceded seven runs for four wickets, including that of Virat Kohli, in his first two overs to help Chennai Super Kings dominate Royal Challengers Bangalore in the first innings of the Indian Premier League 2024 opener

PTI
Chennai Super Kings' Mustafizur Rahman celebrates the wicket of Royal Challengers Bengaluru captain Faf du Plessis during their Indian Premier League 2024 cricket match at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on March 22, 2024. Photo: PTI
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Mustafizur Rahman is one wily operator. The Satkhira-born left-arm pacer is the only Bangladeshi cricketer taking part in the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024. And on the opening day of the season, the 28-year-old showed his worth with a sensational spell, helping Chennai Super Kings dominate Royal Challengers Bengaluru in the first innings. (Match Blog | Scorecard | Full Coverage)

Asked to bowl first by first by visiting captain Faf du Plessis at the iconic Chepauk, the five-time champions, now under rookie captain Ruturaj Gaikwad, leaked runs in the initial overs. In fact, Virat Kohli and du Plessis were in complete control when Deepak Chahar and Tushar Deshpande were operating with the new ball; and even the introduction of spin, in the form of Maheesh Theekshana, didn't stop the flow of runs.

Having already conceded 37 runs in the four overs, Gaikwad turned to Mustafizur Rahman. A dot, then du Plessis creamed the second ball through extra cover for a four. What followed was a mini-collapse.

Faf du Plessis lofted the next one, a well-disguised delivery wide off, and it ended up in the safe hands of Rachin Ravindra, one of the new CSK recruits this season, at backward point. Two balls later, Rajat Patidar edged, offering Mahendra Singh Dhoni his first take of the IPL 2024.

After a brief hiatus, Rahman got the big wicket of Virat Kohli, caught again by Ravindra at deep. His bowling figures soon became 4/6 with Cameroon Green finding Ajinkya Rahane at covers. RCB, chasing an elusive IPL title, were 78/5 in 11.4 overs.

He eventually returned with impressive figures of 4/29 in four overs, 16 of those coming in his final over as Dinesh Karthik and Anuj Rawat launched a rearguard action for the batting side.

As it turned out, those four wickets proved decisive. Chennai Super Kings chased down the target with eight balls to spare for a six-wicket win and Mustafizur Rahman was adjudged Player of the Match.

CSK will take on Gujarat Titans in a replay of last season's final on Tuesday at the same venue, while RCB will play host to Punjab Kings at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru on Monday.

RCB, thanks to the 95-run sixth-wicket stand in 50 balls, reached a respectable 173/6 in 20 overs. Veteran Karthik remained unbeaten on 38 off 26, while Anuj Rawat (48 off 25) got run out off the last ball of the innings.

Meanwhile, in Sylhet, Bangladesh were tottering at 32/3 at the close of play on Day 1 of the first Test against Sri Lanka. Opting to bowl first, the Najmul Hossain Shanto-led Tigers dismissed the visitors for 280 all out despite centuries from Dhananjaya de Silva and Kamindu Mendis.

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