Jos Buttler, RR, KXIP, IPL 2018
Jos Buttler recorded his 3rd consecutive 50 © PTI

Rajasthan Royals (RR) successfully defended 158 against the strong Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) batting line up in Match 40 of Vivo IPL 2018. The total was set up by Jos Buttler, promoted to open batting two games ago, recorded his third consecutive half-century. Buttler raced to his fifty in 27 balls, and thereafter played steadily for his 82. Sanju Samson was the only other RR batsman who went past 20. In response, KL Rahul fought hard for his 95 not out but failed to take his team home this time as RR won by 15 runs.

In the post match presentation Buttler admitted that he enjoys the role of opening: ”Nice change for me; wasn’t quite working in the middle. Didn’t capitalize on a few good opportunities. Change in position worked wonders.”

He also explained why he slowed down after the initial onslaught: ”It was as hard to work out what a good score is. After the powerplay, you thought 180 is a good total but then it started to spin. You were never quite at home (on this pitch). With the field up, you’ve a lot of options. With the ball hard, opening position is a very good place to bat. Boys played well as a team, so we can take that confidence in the next game.”