David Miller smoked an unbeaten 68 off just 38 balls to help the Titans chase down a 189-run target with seven wickets and three deliveries to spare. The win took Hardik Pandya’s side to the all-important title decider, where they will await the winners of Qualifier 2.
Aakash Chopra Picked Outstanding David Miller’s Knock Of 68 As Game Defining Performance In Qualifier 1
While reviewing the GT-RR clash in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra picked David Miller’s knock as a game-defining performance. Playing at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata in Qualifier 1 between Gujarat and Rajasthan, David Miller hit three sixes in the first three balls of the last over to take GT over the line, in what turned out to be a tense game in the IPL playoffs.
Needing 16 off 6 balls, David Miller (68* off 38) completed the chase in style, smacking three successive sixes off Prasidh Krishna in the final over. Debutant Gujarat Titans stormed into their maiden IPL final with this comprehensive 7-wicket victory over Rajasthan Royals.
On a track that was two-paced, Rajasthan Royals rode on opener Jos Buttler’s 56-ball-89 to post 188 for six in 20 overs, which seemed like a winning total considering the pressure of the occasion. But Hardik Pandya (40 no off 27 balls) and David Miller (68 off 38 balls) added 101 runs in exactly 10 overs to seal the deal with three balls to spare.
He reasoned: “Killer Miller was absolutely outstanding. He made 68 runs off just 38 balls, with three fours and five sixes. I have chosen David Miller because it was a precarious situation, when he came to bat the score was 85/3 and the tenth over was in progress. They still needed 100 runs and only 10 overs were left.”
The former Indian batter highlighted that David Miller started cautiously and neutralized the threat of Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuzvendra Chahal.
Aakash Chopra observed: “He also started a little slowly. Hardik Pandya was taking a little time at the other end. We anyway say that Rajasthan’s bowling is very good, so you take your time and play carefully, you feel that Ravichandran Ashwin or Yuzi (Chahal) might get you out but nothing like that happened.”
David Miller scored just 10 runs off the first 14 deliveries he faced. He then smashed 58 off the next 24 balls once he had gotten his eye in.
Aakash Chopra: David Miller Was Absolutely Stellar
Aakash Chopra pointed out that David Miller’s belligerent knock allowed Hardik Pandya to play more sedately at the other end.
He explained: “David Miller was absolutely stellar, so much stellar that he told Hardik Pandya to take his time, he (Pandya) was hitting at the start, not to take tension and that he will manage everything. Everything was in the arc, it was going out of the park.”
The reputed commentator concluded by praising David Miller for delivering the goods in a crunch encounter.
Aakash Chopra elaborated: “He was also the Player of the Match. The way he played, he didn’t crumble but shone under pressure. When you have run chases under pressure, especially qualifiers or knockout games, these are the kind of games where quality comes to the fore and that quality was seen.”
David Miller and Hardik Pandya strung together an unbroken 106-run partnership for the fourth wicket. While the Gujarat Titans skipper was the early aggressor, he was more content to play second fiddle once the Proteas big-hitter started taking the attack to the RR bowlers.
The Gujarat Titans required 104 runs off 63 balls when David Miller joined Hardik Pandya in the center. The pair remained unseparated until the end as the Gujarat Titans pursued down the 189-run target effortlessly.