Ben Stokes smashed a blistering century, while Sanju Samson well-supported him with a quick-fire fifty to help Rajasthan Royals seal a comprehensive eight-wicket victory over defending champions Mumbai Indians in Match 45 of the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.
Chasing a good target of 196 runs to win, Rajasthan Royals lost opener Robin Uthappa (13) and skipper Sanju Samson (11) cheaply inside the Powerplay.
Opener Ben Stokes then not only hammered his maiden century of the season but also stitched a massive 152-run partnership with Sanju Samson (54 off 31 balls) for the third wicket to help the Rajasthan franchise cross the mark inside just 18.2 overs.
Stokes brought up his second ton of the cash-rich league by picking up six runs on the first delivery of the penultimate over by James Pattinson.
En route to his unbeaten knock of 107 runs off just 60 balls, the England batsman also smashed 14 boundaries and three maximums.
Pattinson was the only bowler for Mumbai Indians who managed to add two wickets to his account.
Earlier, the Mumbai-based franchise lost Quinton de Kock cheaply for six runs in the very first over off a Jofra Archer delivery.
Subsequently, opener Ishan Kishan (37) and Suryakumar Yadav (40) stitched an 83-run stand for the second wicket before Hardik Pandya (60) hammered a quick-fire half-century at the back end of the innings to help Mumbai Indians post a good total of 195/5 in their stipulated 20 overs.
For Rajasthan Royals, Archer and Shreyas Gopal claimed two wickets each, while Kartik Tyagi also chipped in with a wicket.
Stokes was declared ‘Man of the Match’ for his impressive show with the bat.
Despite the defeat, Mumbai Indians continue to stand at the top of the IPL 2020 table with seven wins from 11 matches. Rajasthan, on the other hand, have moved up to the sixth spot and are now standing with five victories from 12 matches.
Brief scores: MI 195/5 in 20 overs (Hardik Pandya 60 not out, Suryakumar Yadav 40; Shreyas Gopal 2/30) vs RR 196/2 in 20 overs (Ben Stokes 107 not out, Sanju Samson 54 not out; James Pattinson 2/40)