Mustafizur Rahman made a dismal debut for Rajasthan Royals as his side suffered an agonising four-run defeat against Punjab Kings in the ongoing 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai today.
KL Rahul's 50-ball 91 and quickfire knocks from Deepak Hooda (64 off 28) and Chris Gayle (40 off 28) helped Punjab pile up a mammoth 221 for six after being sent to bat.
However, a breathtaking century from skipper Sanju Samson almost took Rajasthan over the line. Samson, who spearheaded the steep chase single-handedly, perished only in the last ball of the innings after a splendid 63-ball 119. With Rajasthan requiring five off the last ball, Samson failed to hit Arshdeep Singh for a maximum and was caught in the outfield by Deepak Hooda.
Earlier in the game, Mustafizur, who made his debut for Rajasthan, remained wicket-less and conceded 45 runs in his four overs. However, his figures could have been much more impressive had luck been on the left-armer's side.
Introduced in the second over of the game, Mustafizur was getting some sharp movement off the pitch right from the beginning. The left-arm seamer could have had right-hander Mayank Agarwal trapped in front in the second ball of his first over. A sharp inswinging delivery left Agarwal in a tangle and struck him on his pads. Umpire denied a loud appeal from the Rajasthan players and skipper Sanju Samson decided to not go for a review. But TV replay later showed that that could have been Mustafizur's first scalp in Royals' colors. Mustafizur ended up conceding 11 in his first over.
The left-armer could have also had the important scalp of a dangerous-looking Hooda in the very first ball of his second spell in the game. Hooda, on 39 off 15 deliveries, sliced a cutter from Mustafizur in the air but a misunderstanding between Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes saw the chance go begging. Hooda eventually went on to score a quickfire fifty on his way to powering Punjab to a formidable total.