Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis delivers big time to get IPL team Lucknow Super Giants into finals
Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis showed he was worth the $2 million new Indian Premier League franchise Lucknow Super Giants shelled out for him by snaring two wickets off the final two balls in Mumbai to secure his team a spot in the playoffs.
Stoinis, who earnt the massive payday at the new team when team mentor Gautam Gambhir described him as the “complete package”, went from villain to hero when he stepped up in the final over of the clash with Kolkata Knight Riders.
Needing to chase 21 in the final over from Stoinis, Rinku Singh piled the pressure on the Aussie as hit a four, two sixes and then pushed for two off the first four balls.
But with Kolkata needing three runs off the final two balls to win, Stoinis held his nerve as he dismissed Rinku on the fifth ball, with Evin Lewis taking a stunning one-handed catch in the deep and snaring the dropping ball in his left hand.
“I don’t think he knew it was going to him and then he just stuck one hand (out) and I can’t believe it stuck. We’re giving him man of the match,” Stoinis told Star Sports.
“He chilled all game and he was so looking forward to batting and then he ends up pulling out a one-handed blinder.”
The Knight Riders still needed three runs off the final ball, but Stoinis completed the job by bowling Umesh Yadav with a yorker as Lucknow joined fellow new franchise Gujarat Titans in the playoffs.
Stoinis finished with 3-23 from his two overs, but the final two balls of that spell could be the most important he’s ever bowled in the IPL.
His heroics came after South African star Quinton de Kock scored an unbeaten 140 off 70 balls as he and captain KL Rahul, who scored 68 not out, became the first opening pair to bat all 20 overs in an IPL innings.
The South African wasn’t expecting as close a finish given the final-over scenario.
“I thought Marcus Stoinis would defend it easily,” de Kock said.
“But when the first three balls went, I thought the game was done for us. But the catch of Evin Lewis turned things for us.”
Originally published as Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis delivers big time to get IPL team into finals
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