Shahrukh Khan stole the show with a last-ball six to guide Tamil Nadu to their record third Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, beating Karnataka by four wickets at the Arun Jaitley Stadium.
With 16 required off the last six balls, Shahrukh and Sai Kishore managed to take the game deep with five required off the last ball and Shahrukh on strike. Under pressure, the young batter struck one over the square-leg fielder to pull off an emphatic victory.
Reflecting on the clean hit that took Tamil Nadu to the title, Shahrukh Khan revealed that his intention was to hit the ball over the long-on fielder.
“There were a lot of things in my mind, but I tried to keep it simple,” he said at the end of the game. “The ball was rough and the wicket was slow, so I wanted to connect it off the middle. I was waiting to hit it over long-on, and I got the room to get it over square leg.
“It has been a special thing to hit a last-ball six,” he added. “I’ll remember this for a long time.”
Shahrukh Khan, who represented the Punjab Kings in the IPL, remained unbeaten on 33 from 15 deliveries, including three big hits, to take Tamil Nadu home.
“We played a bit slow in the middle” – Shahrukh Khan
Chasing 152 runs set by Karnataka, Hari Nishant got Tamil Nadu off to a flier. However, once he got out after a 12-ball 23 run knock, Vijay Shankar & Co. were sluggish in their scoring.
The momentum shifted when Tamil Nadu lost well-set N Jagadeeshan and skipper Shankar in a matter of just two balls. Karnataka looked to have wrested control of the game before the last-ball six in the 19th over by Shahrukh Khan.
“We played a bit slow in the middle, but that’s the trend of our team – the roles are well-defined, and the top order had trust in me and Mohammed,” Shahrukh said. “He (Mohammed) has been a special talent so thanks to him.”
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