Lucknow Super Giants eked out a one-run win against Kolkata Knight Riders in the evening encounter on Saturday, May 21, at the Eden Gardens to secure their place in the playoffs this season.
After being asked to bat first, Lucknow managed to score 176 for eight in the first innings courtesy off Nicholas Pooran's sublime 58 off 30 deliveries, studded with four boundaries and five sixes.
In reply, the Knight Riders lost wickets at regular intervals and before Rinku Singh consolidated the innings with yet another stroke-filled fifty. With 20 runs required off the last five balls, the southpaw smashed a six on the fourth delivery to get the equation down to 12 from two balls.
However, Rinku managed to hit a boundary off the penultimate ball, and with eight runs required, the six off the last delivery did not matter as Lucknow clinched the thriller by one run.
"When I hit five sixes against Gujarat, the same was running through my mind a bit. So I was relaxed and confident of handling the situation. We needed 21 runs off the last over, and I missed one ball, which became a four," said Rinku in the post-match press conference.
"My family members are very happy, and a lot of things have worked well. When I played that innings last year, people started noticing me. After I hit those five sixes, I started getting a lot of respect from the people, and now a lot of people recognise me, so it feels good," he added.
The 25-year-old has been brilliant for the Knight Riders this season and amassed 474 runs in 14 innings at an average of 59.25 and a strike rate of 149.5, including four half-centuries.
With most cricketing pundits across the world suggesting his inclusion in the Indian side for T20Is, Rinku stated his aim is to continue with his routine and churn out consistent performances.
"If you have a good season, anybody will feel really good and be happy. But I'm not thinking that I will be selected for the Indian team. I will stick to my routine, continue my practice and the usual gym. The name and fame will be there, but I'll just stick to my work," he concluded.