After a comprehensive win in their first game against the Mumbai Indians, the Rising Pune Supergiants were humiliated by the Gujarat Lions at Rajkot. After electing to bat first on a docile Rajkot track, the visitors got off to a solid start, thanks to Faf du Plessis coming to the party. However, in the latter half, Pune struggled as they could only manage 163-5.
Gujarat, led by the onslaught from Finch and McCullum, stole the game within the powerplay itself as the two power hitters rampaged against the Pune pacers. The Lions eventually won with exactly two overs to spare and boosted their tally. In the post-match presentation, Pune skipper MS Dhoni admitted that his pacers did not bowl well, which cost them the game. “I think it was a good score but what’s important is to bowl well in the first six overs,” said Dhoni.
“I don’t think the fast bowlers bowled well. I told them quite a few things and it stays within the team. We gave away too many runs in the powerplay. We need to look at the composition. Need to look at the players who suit us the best. The first game we did well but we could have played with a few other players in this game. But credit to the players who have done well in the first game. It’s a new team and you don’t have the luxury of playing some fantastic all-rounders,” added Dhoni.
Aaron Finch won his second Man of the Match award on the trot as he thrashed the helpless Pune bowlers and registered a half century. Finch also praised McCullum’s contribution in the opening stand. “Nice to start off well and contribute to the wins. Was a beautiful wicket out there. Started off scratchy and got a bit lucky in the middle. Nice to bat with Baz. He scores so fast and takes the pressure off. He is a special player. For someone to run down the wicket and smash a few of the back foot, it takes some skill. Very big game and Pune are a very strong side led by a great leader MS,” Finch said.