'Hats off to RCB fans for the way they've stood for us': Last-ball hero Parthiv Patel

In Sunday’s thriller against CSK, Parthiv Patel effected a crucial last ball run-out to get a victory for RCB.
'Hats off to RCB fans for the way they've stood for us': Last-ball hero Parthiv Patel
'Hats off to RCB fans for the way they've stood for us': Last-ball hero Parthiv Patel
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With MS Dhoni batting at the crease on 84 and with Chennai Super Kings needing just two runs off the last ball of the game, not many would have expected the turn of events that transpired in Sunday's IPL game against southern rivals Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). 

Dhoni uncharacteristically missed the ball and RCB wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel hit the stumps to effect a run-out and clinch a thrilling one-run win for RCB to keep their playoff hopes alive. 

The sequence of events has made Parthiv Patel the talk of the town in Bengaluru. But ask him what was running through his mind during the last ball and he says, "When a batsman is 80 not out from 40 balls, you expect him to put bat on ball. But luckily, Umesh (Yadav) executed that slow one really well. I was prepared to throw it and had even given away my one glove, and luckily, I could execute that under pressure. If a batsman is hitting like how Dhoni was, you generally don’t miss a shot, but I’m glad he missed it in the end. It was one of those days that was made for me.” Parthiv also scored a crucial 53 runs in the game and was awarded the man-of-the-match award. 

With a vital contribution behind him, Parthiv is now looking forward to the rest of the IPL and hopes to propel RCB to an unlikely playoffs berth. "I will try and do the same things I’ve been doing as we’ve done well in the last few games. Nothing changes. I will try and get into the other matches with the same mindset," he says with a smile on his face. 

Parthiv’s good form in the IPL comes at a difficult time in his personal life. His father Ajay Patel suffered a brain haemorrhage and was admitted to the hospital two months ago. Parthiv missed the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy to stay by his father’s side and is now playing in the IPL after being encouraged by his family. 

Despite his personal turmoil, Parthiv has managed to stand tall through the season with his consistent contribution to the team. “I just try and make sure that I’m well prepared and don’t have to worry about results in the game – this is something that I’ve done year after year. I just ensure that whatever process I’m going through gives me the required results,” he says. 

He further credits captain Virat Kohli for bringing out the best in everyone in the team. “I’ve played with him for India and now with RCB – he pushes everyone beyond limits. He’s someone who sets an example for others in terms of training and how he prepares for the game and everyone else follows,” Parthiv adds. 

He also thanks RCB fans who have patiently supported the team through the ups and downs of this year's IPL. “We haven’t won the IPL so far, but they continue to support us. Hats off to the way they come in and root for us. I hope we are able to do it this year. If not, there’s always the next year,” he signs off.

Ikyatha Yerasala is a Bengaluru-based journalist who's also a movie, pun and anti-patriarchy enthusiast.

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