On this day in 2008, Rajasthan Royals captured the inaugural IPL

Defying expectations, RR had finished at the top of the points tally in the league stage with 22 points.
On this day in 2008, Rajasthan Royals captured the inaugural IPL
Shane Warne had led Rajasthan Royals to the title back in 2008. Photo- Rajasthan Royals Twitter

NEW DELHI: On this day in 2008, Rajasthan Royals won the first-ever edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), defeating Chennai Super Kings in the final by three wickets at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.

Defying expectations, RR had finished at the top of the points tally in the league stage with 22 points. Youngsters like Ravindra Jadeja, Sohail Tanvir, Yusuf Pathan and Swapnil Asnodkar had perfectly complemented big-time international giants like Shane Warne, the captain, Shane Watson, and Graeme Smith. Chennai Super Kings were third on the points tally with 16 points in the league stage. MS Dhoni, the captain aimed to replicate his international cricket success with the franchise.

In the semi-finals, the Royals had recorded a massive 105-run win against Delhi Daredevils, bundling them out for only 92. In the other semi-final, Chennai Super Kings recorded a comprehensive nine-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab, now known as Punjab Kings.

In the final, CSK, put in to bat first, scored a challenging 163/5 in their 20 overs. Parthiv Patel (38), Suresh Raina (43) and MS Dhoni (29*) gave valuable contributions to their team. Other batters struggled against the RR bowling attack and wickets were lost at regular intervals.

Yusuf Pathan was the pick of the bowlers for the Royals, taking 3/22 in four overs. Shane Watson and Sohail Tanvir also got a wicket each.

Chasing 164, Rajasthan were off to a poor start, with the team reeling at 3/42 in 6.4 overs. That is when Shane Watson and Yusuf Pathan started to rebuild things for their side. The two had a valuable 65-run stand that was broken after Watson was dismissed by spin wizard Mutthaiah Muralitharan for 28. However, Pathan carried on and scored 56 off just 38 before falling when the team’s score was 143 in 17.4 overs.

The equation came down to 21 runs in 14 balls with 2 wickets to go. Captain Shane Warne and Sohail Tanvir (9* each) then took their team to their maiden IPL title, with the latter hitting the winning single on the final ball of the game.

The side written off by many as the weakest among all had conquered the team captained by T20 World Cup-winning captain Dhoni. Yusuf Pathan was crowned the ‘Man of the Match’ for his all-round effort.

Brief Scores: Rajasthan Royals 164/7 in 20 overs (Yusuf Pathan 56, Shane Watson 28, Albie Morkel 2/25) defeated Chennai Super Kings (Suresh Raina 43, Parthiv Patel 38, Yusuf Pathan 3/22) by seven wickets.

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