IPL 2018: Five times tailenders won the match for their team
T20 cricket is a batsman's game, they say. However, both seam bowlers, as well as spinners, have carved a special place for themselves in the shortest format of the game. They have bowled numerous maidens, they've picked up crucial wickets, and they've changed the direction of a tournament with the ball.
Sometimes, they have done it with the bat too.
Let us look at five instances when tailenders managed to take their team home by displaying single-minded composure in the dying seconds of the chase:
#5 Piyush Chawla: Final, IPL 2014
The seventh edition of the IPL saw Gautam Gambhir lift his second trophy as the captain of the Kolkata Knight Riders. However, it required significant overall effort and a last-over burst from his team to come out on top of Kings XI Punjab in the final of the tournament.
KXIP had dominated the league stage that year and had managed to get one over the mighty Chennai Super Kings in the second qualifier, thereby setting up an exciting clash with the side that had defeated them in the first.
Gambhir won the toss and chose to bowl first at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. After losing Virender Sehwag early, KXIP regrouped well to reach a powerful total of 199 at the end of 20 overs. The score was powered by a terrific century from Wriddhiman Saha and a well-made fifty from Manan Vohra.
KKR had a scary start to the chase as they lost both their openers, Robin Uthappa and Gambhir, within the first six overs. However, crucial knocks from Manish Pandey and Yusuf Pathan brought them back into the game.
George Bailey and Co. fought back to scalp as many as five wickets in the space of 29 deliveries in the last chunk of the game. The match went down to the final over of the chase and KKR required 5 runs for clinching the victory.
The equation was 11 off 7 before the last ball of the 19th over, which was dispatched for a massive six over backward square-leg by Piyush Chawla. The Number 8 proved to be the hero of the night as he slammed a low full-toss outside off-stump over point to hit the winning runs off the third delivery of the final over. He raised his arms in the air and ran in the glee of taking his team over the line.
Chawla played an incredible cameo of 13 off just 5 deliveries.