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Sanju Samson’s ‘tactical blunder’ called out by Sehwag, Tom Moody in RR’s IPL Qualifier 2 loss, asked ‘Hetmyer’ question

Virender Sehwag, Tom Moody criticised Sanju Samson’s ‘tactical blunder’ in regards to Shimron Hetmyer during RR’s defeat in IPL 2024 Qualifier 2.

Rajasthan Royals were left heartbroken as their amazing run in IPL 2024 came to an end in Qualifier 2, as they crashed to a 36-run defeat against Sunrisers Hyderabad in Chennai. It wasn’t expected to be an easy encounter for SRH and after the first innings, it looked like it would be a closely-fought encounter.

Rajasthan Royals’ Shimron Hetmyer (L) is clean bowled as Sunrisers Hyderabad’s wicketkeeper Heinrich Klaasen celebrates his dismissal.-(AFP)

But RR totally collapsed in the run-chase and drew curtains to a good campaign. Chasing 176, RR could only reach 139/7 in 20 overs, with Dhruv Jurel getting a half-century. Meanwhile, SRH relied on their left-arm spinners to bring success as Shahbaz Ahmed returned with figures of 3/23. Meanwhile, Abhishek Sharma also registered 2/24.

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Initially, a half-century by Heinrich Klaasen (50) saw SRH post 175/9 in 20 overs. Meanwhile, Avesh Khan and Trent Boult took three-wicket hauls respectively for RR.

Speaking after the match, former SRH coach Tom Moody and India legend Virender Sehwag dissected Sanju Samson’s captaincy and pointed out a fatal flaw which gave away the game to SRH. Talking on ESPNcricinfo, Moody questioned RR’s decision to send Shimron Hetmyer at no. 7, after Jurel (no. 5) and R Ashwin (no. 6), particularly due to SRH using their left-arm spinners.

“We shouldn’t be surprised because that is the trend. We shouldn’t be surprised and every single time we sit here and say that we are surprised. To me it was an absolute no-brainer. Hetmyer had to go in ahead of Dhruv Jurel, regardless of whether he played very nicely. He would have still played nice when he got his opportunity. But they needed to negate the two left-arm spinners, right at the outset. That was the hole, Sunrisers had in their attack and they needed to negate that. They should have sent Hetmyer in and said just play your game. Take it down in your zone, let’s get ahead in this game, do not allow these left-arm spinners to take control of the game. Yes, people will see we end up getting out to left-arm spin, but the game was nearly gone by then and that was a particularly good ball, a carrom ball as we mentioned. If we got ahead in the game, that would not have ever happened,” he said.

“It is a tactical blunder,” he further added.

Meanwhile, Sehwag was also surprised by RR’s approach in using Hetmyer in the final. “I was surprised by their decision to bring in Hetmyer so late. They should have bought him earlier, because there were two left-arm spinners. The quicker a left-arm batters comes, it would have been better,” Sehwag said.


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