Rashid Khan has further enhanced his reputation as arguably the best Twenty20 bowler in the world with yet another stellar performance in the second Qualifier against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Eden Gardens on Saturday night.
In fact, the game also saw another facet of Rashid as he contributed with both bat and ball – to fire his side into the grand finale.
When the Afghan star walked in to bat, his team was reeling on 124 for five in 16.5 overs. Even the 150-run mark was looking like a distant dream at that time. But what followed thereafter left the jam-packed Eden Gardens shell-shocked. Rashid faced just 10 balls to blow away the Knight Riders’ bowlers with a sizzling batting display.
Rashid started his innings with a four that flew over the wicketkeeper. It was a typical tail-ender shot but was absolutely not the precursor of the things that were to follow.
In the next nine balls, he hit one four and four brilliantly timed-sixes to fire the Sunrisers to 174 for seven in the allotted 20 overs. The leg-spinner struck 34 off just 10 deliveries.
It was not the only contribution of the night from Rashid as he single-handedly eliminated the Knight Riders.
The Knight Riders started brightly with the bat. Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn added 45 runs in just 19 balls to set the tone for the chase.
At 87 for one in the ninth over, the Knight Riders were cruising. However, the game turned on its head when a brilliant throw from Rashid from the boundary lines resulted in Nitish Rana getting run out. After that, it was Rashid’s turn with the ball to make an even bigger impact.
With his deadly leg-spin, he accounted for Chris Lynn, Robin Uthappa, and Andre Russell to all but seal the game.
The Sunrisers went on to register a 14-run win to set up a date with Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the final on Sunday at Wankhade.
Ever since his heroic performance, Rashid Khan has been garnering praise from all over.
Even, the Bollywood actors also went gaga over the 19-year old.
Here are some of the reactions:
What a great match last night.. feel really sad for @KKRiders but hats off to @rashidkhan_19 who slammed 34 in 10, bowled 4 overs for 19, took 3 crucial wickets, 2 catches & effected a run out.. a performance deserving of a victory.
And now for a cracking final. 🤞🏼
— Farhan Akhtar (@FarOutAkhtar) May 26, 2018
@rashidkhan_19 wow wow wow. Truly a magical spell of bowling a great ambassador for the sport and his country. The final is gonna be thrilling
— Varun SAHEJ Dhawan (@Varun_dvn) May 26, 2018
34 of 10 & 3-19 in a T-20. What a brilliant performance by @rashidkhan_19 ! He’s a very special talent & even the God of Cricket tweeted so 🙂 Great captaincy by @KanyWilliamson today. #KKRvsSRH #IPL2018
— Saiyami Kher (@SaiyamiKher) May 25, 2018
— Ranveer Singh (@RanveerOfficial) May 25, 2018