Eye-catching batting displays from IPL debutants Ayush Badoni and Abhinav Manohar also lit up a tense match at the Wankhede

Gujarat Titans 161 for 5 (Tewatia 40*, Hardik 33, Chameera 2-22) beat Lucknow Super Giants 158 for 6 (Hooda 55, Badoni 54, Shami 3-25) by five wickets

Lucknow Super Giants threatened to become the first team to defend a target in IPL 2022, but late blows from David Miller, Rahul Tewatia and Abhinav Manohar ensured it was Gujarat Titans who won the battle of the new teams.
After Dushmantha Chameera and Avesh Khan bowled with rapid pace in the powerplay to begin Super Giants’ defence of 158, their spinners brought them control, despite the dew setting in at the Wankhede Stadium. Krunal Pandya, who bowled to Hardik Pandya (33 off 28 balls) for the first time in an official match, bested his younger brother. In the next over, Deepak Hooda bowled Matthew Wade for 30 off 29 balls.


WATCH - How Tewatia and Miller turned it around

WATCH – How Tewatia and Miller turned it around

It left Titans needing 81 off 49 balls, with Manohar, who had played all of four T20s before Monday, listed at No.7. With the left-handed pair of Miller and Tewatia in the middle, Rahul gave the offspinner Hooda another over, but the move worked against Super Giants as Tewatia and Miller walloped him for a four and a six each, narrowing the equation to 46 off 24 balls. As a result of that move, Chameera, Super Giants’ most penetrative bowler on the day, bowled just three overs.

Tewatia then laid into Ravi Bishnoi, before Avesh removed Miller in the 18th over to tighten the chase. Chameera tightened it even further with a nine-run penultimate over.

Avesh was left to defend ten off the last over, but Abhinav and Tewatia coolly sealed the deal for Titans, with five wickets and two balls to spare.

Shami scythes through top order
Mohammed Shami landed the very first ball of the match on a Test-match length with a bolt-upright seam. It veered in with the angle and then seamed away to scratch KL Rahul’s outside edge. The ball continued to nip around in the early exchanges, and Shami made two more incisions in the powerplay, storming through the defences of Quinton de Kock and Manish Pandey to leave Super Giants 29 for 4 in the fifth over. Varun Aaron, also struck in the powerplay, having Evin Lewis caught brilliantly by Shubman Gill off an uppish pull.
The Hooda-Badoni rescue act
Hooda was slow off the blocks and was on 7 off 15 balls at one point. He then lined up the seemingly weaker links in the Titans’ attack, taking Hardik and Aaron for 36 off 20 balls. In his first bowling shift in the IPL since the 2019 final for Mumbai Indians against Chennai Super Kings, Hardik went wicketless while giving up 37 runs in his four overs overall.
When Rashid Khan pitched one in his slot, Hooda confidently slog-swept him for six, and moments later brought up his half-century off 36 balls. Ayush Badoni made a half-century of his own, on IPL debut, bringing up the landmark with an audacious pulled six off Lockie Ferguson in the 19th over. From 47 for 4 at the halfway mark, Super Giants racked up 111 runs in their last ten overs, with Krunal also contributing an unbeaten 21 off 13.

Chameera’s double-strike
Chameera might not even started the tournament had Mark Wood been fit. Having got his chance, he showed why he probably should be a regular in Super Giants’ XI by getting rid of both the Titans openers. In his first over, the Sri Lanka quick had Shubman Gill toe-ending a catch to point for a duck. Then, in his second, he yorked No.3 Vijay Shankar for 4 off 6 balls after having pushed him back with hard lengths.

Tewatia and Abhinav finish it off
Wade and Hardik played themselves in and put on 57 in eight overs before falling within ten balls of each other. Titans needed a strong finishing kick, and it came from Tewatia, for whom they had forked out INR 9 crore at the auction earlier this year.

He dominated a 60-run fifth-wicket stand with Miller, punishing the spinners in particular. All up, Tewatia struck 30 off 15 balls from Hooda and Bishnoi. After slog-sweeping Hooda for six, he reverse-swept Bishnoi for six, messing with the legspinner’s line and forcing him out of his comfort zone.

Manohar also stepped up under pressure, cracking the first two balls of the last over, bowled by Avesh, for fours. Fittingly, it was Tewatia who hit the winning runs, sparking big celebrations in Titans’ camp.

Deivarayan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo