NEW DELHI: Rajasthan Royals leg spinner and hard-hitting batsman Rahul Tewatia became an overnight sensation after he smashed 5 sixes in an over against Kings XI Punjab to take his team to an improbable win in the IPL recently.
Tewatia however, was seen struggling to connect initially against Kings XI Punjab bowlers but then suddenly managed to find the top gear. With his stupendous batting show, the Haryana lad single-handedly turned the game on its head against KL Rahul’s team by smashing five sixes off Sheldon Cottrell’s 18th over.
Tewatia is a happy man after his heroics (31-ball 53) in the record run chase in the IPL, that saw the Royals chase down 224.
He struck seven sixes, including five in one over off Cottrell. His heroics helped Rajasthan Royals beat Kings XI Punjab by four wickets with three balls to spare.
“I was looking at the run rate and wanted the scoreboard ticking as per the required run rate. Initially, I was not able to hit the ball properly but I was confident that I would switch gears quickly. I wanted to take my team close to the game and win. I was confident of a win. And, that’s what happened. The game-changing over eventually came (Sheldon Cottrell’s over),” Tewatia said in response to a question asked by Timesofindia.com.
“I hit him for a six and the rest of the sixes kept coming. That was a game-changing over. I knew that I couldn’t hit for the first 15 to 20 balls, but I was confident that if I manage to hit 6 or 7 sixes in the last 3 or 4 overs, then it can turn the match around. That was the plan,” the 27 year old Tewatia said.
“When I was not able to hit, I was under pressure, but Sanju (Samson) told me that it’s a matter of one hit and I was waiting for that one hit,” Tewatia further said.
Tewatia was promoted to No. 4 when the Royals needed 124 runs in 11 overs. And he didn’t disappoint his captain Steve Smith.
“When Steve Smith asked me to bat at the number 4 spot, it was a big-time opportunity for me. I wanted to give my best. I went in with a ‘go and take on the bowler’ mindset. Smith told me at this level one requires mental toughness. Smith and the coach were always confident of my abilities,” Tewatia said during a Zoom interaction arranged by Rajasthan Royals.