Even Shreyas Gopal probably will have a tough time believing this, but he may have got the best of all time hat-tricks in the history of Indian Premier League (IPL). Gopal staged the perfect comeback for Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the rain-curtailed five-over match between Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
After Varun Aaron’s expensive 23-run over, Virat Kohli and AB De Villiers were ready to inflict more pain on RR bowlers in the remaining four overs. Skipper Steven Smith threw Gopal in the line of fire to stop the destructive duo.
Kohli welcomed him with a mighty six over long on. It was followed by a hammered shot over mid off fielder for a boundary. On the third delivery, he got a couple of runs. The scorecard read 35 for none in 1.3 overs, pretty scary if you are a bowler.
But Gopal had got the wicket of RCB skipper before. He kept the next ball away from Kohli asking him to open his arms and take the aerial route, he took the bait and was caught at long on. It was quite an achievement for the leg-spinner as he got him twice in this season, but it was supposed to get better.
AB de Villiers was on strike. Given that it was just a five-over match, he did not resort to defending or knocking the leggie around. The 25-year-old knew it. The Proteas batsman went for a big hit but could barely cross the 30-yard circle as he was caught by Riyan Parag.
After seeing two wickets fall down in quick succession, Marcus Stoinis made the same mistake. The hat-trick wicket was a soft dismissal as Stoinis almost played a check shot which got as far as the mid off fielder.
Shreyas Gopal’s hat-trickhttps://t.co/FbLiC2ZjnK
— Faizal Khan (@faizalkhanm9) May 1, 2019
Gopal became the 17th bowler to take a hat-trick in the history of IPL. From getting hit for 12 runs in the first three balls to taking a hat-trick in next three. He broke the backbone of RCB by getting wickets of the one of the best T20 batsmen around. Most importantly Gopal had brought his team back into the game by taking
Gopal has taken 18 wickets from 13 games. He is only second to Delhi Capitals’ speedster Kagiso Rabada who has 25 wickets from 12 games.