The scintillatingly close T20 super over finishes over the past few months will be the highlight of the 2020 cricketing calendar. With the Indian T20 League approaching yet another nail-biting conclusion, we look back at the best super over dramas that the tournament has seen since its inception in 2008.
MUMBAI vs PUNJAB (2020)
The tournament’s best-ever T20 super over finish came in the current edition of the league. KL Rahul’s brilliant opening knock almost helped Punjab chase Mumbai’s set target of 177 before Deepak Hooda and Chris Jordan fell short by a run. Punjab looked on the brink of a defeat in the super over when a Jasprit Bumrah masterclass limited them to just six runs, but Mohammed Shami achieved the impossible by restricting Mumbai to just five runs. The match was forced to a second super over. Batting first this time, Mumbai scored 11 runs with Chris Jordan bowling for Punjab. In response, Chris Gayle and Mayank Agarwal finally brought an end to the drama by chasing those runs against Trent Boult.
RAJASTHAN vs KOLKATA (2014)
As historical as the two super overs of the above match was, it wasn’t the first time that an Indian T20 League match was tied after the super over. It was a Rajasthan vs Kolkata clash in 2014 when the outcome had remained undecided but a second super over was not in the rule book. Held in Abu Dhabi, Rajasthan had set a target of 152 for Kolkata with the help of a gritty knock by Ajinkya Rahane. Kolkata had started well themselves with captain Gautam Gambhir leading the way before a meltdown saw them getting bundled for 152 as well. The super over saw both Kolkata and Rajasthan managing to score exactly 11 runs as the match remained undecided. However, the rule back then stated that the total number of boundaries in the match would determine the winner if all else failed. Rajasthan had hit 18 boundaries as opposed to Kolkata’s 14 and they were declared the winners.
MUMBAI vs GUJARAT (2017)
Not the most dramatic of super overs that the Indian T20 League had seen but this was the occasion when Jasprit Bumrah’s talent was discovered. Gujarat had put up a competitive target of 154 in the first innings but Mumbai’s strong batting line-up had seemingly got it covered. At a time, Mumbai needed just 15 runs in the last 12 balls that looked more than gettable. However, Gujarat found an unlikely hero in Basil Thampi who scalped two wickets in the penultimate over before Mumbai ended up scoring 152 by the 20th over. A towering Kieron Pollard scored 10 runs of his own in the super over as Mumbai set a target of 11 runs after facing six balls. But, a young Bumrah announced his arrival on the scene with some magical stuff as he limited Hyderabad to just six runs in his six balls.
RAJASTHAN vs KOLKATA (2014)
More than the match, it was the battle between MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh that fans were excited about. With Dhoni missing quite a few matches for Chennai with a hand injury, the thala was wildly welcomed back by fans. However, Yuvraj Singh remained quiet with the willow as Punjab were wrapped up for just 130 runs in the first innings. Though Chennai started strongly with the scoreboard reading 97-2 in the thirteenth over, the fans were shocked to see the yellow army losing six wickets in the next 30 balls before they needed 10 runs in the last over. Chennai could only make nine, thus pushing the match to a super over. Batting first in the super over, Suresh Raina helped Chennai score 10 runs before Mahela Jayawardene and Yuvraj Singh chased those runs easily.
CHENNAI vs PUNJAB (2010)
Not the closest of super overs, but this was the very first super over in the tournament’s history. With the tournament getting shifted to South Africa, the historic match was hosted in Cape Town. Batting first, defending champions Rajasthan had scored a competitive 150 runs but Kolkata had looked well-equipped to see it through. Sourav Ganguly’s 46 runs off 30 balls and Chris Gayle’s 41 off 33 balls had seen the side chasing the runs easily before a middle-order crumble saw Kolkata drawing the match. Kolkata hadn’t disappointed in the super over though with Gayle hitting 15 runs in six balls but Rajasthan’s Yusuf Pathan was a different beast back then. The hard-hitter scored 18 runs in the first four balls itself of Ajantha Mendis as RR soared to a win.
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