Kings XI Punjab v Mumbai Indians, IPL 2017, Indore April 20, 2017

The Buttler bash that took a while coming

Jos Buttler smashed 77 off 37 balls as Mumbai Indians gunned down 199 and sealed their highest successful IPL chase

Play 02:07
Chopra: Buttler's low hands suit Indian conditions

Star turn

On most nights, a Hashim Amla hundred and a total of 198 would have been enough - or more than enough - for a T20 team to win. But this was Jos Buttler's night. His 77 off 37 balls made such a mockery of the target that by the time he fell at the start of the 14th over, the asking rate had dropped to four.

Buttler has opened in each of his six innings this IPL season, but until Thursday, he had only made 108 runs at a strike-rate of 133. Those numbers were prime fodder for those demanding Rohit Sharma to slot back in at the top of the order. But Mumbai have shown a lot more patience with their players this season, and considering Buttler was twice given out incorrectly, he has deserved the leeway.

Buttler's carnage began in the very first over with a six over square leg and, as he kept peppering the boundary, Mumbai amassed their highest score in the Powerplay - 82 for 1. From there, victory was almost academic.

How Jos Buttler razed Kings XI Punjab © ESPNcricinfo Ltd

The wow moment

Ishant Sharma bowled a full ball outside off, and Buttler cracked it fiercely to extra cover. The ball was flying rapidly towards David Miller's head and though he threw his hands up in an effort to catch it, the ball burst through his hands and clattered away to the boundary.

The numbers

  • Buttler smashed 32 off his 77 runs through the covers at a strike-rate of 266.
  • This was Buttler's highest score in T20 cricket. It was also his first fifty in 20 innings across formats, since his 76 in the first innings of the Mumbai Test last year.
  • The 199 Mumbai made in 15.3 overs was their highest successful chase in the IPL, beating the 190 they made in 14.4 overs against Rajasthan Royals in 2014.

What they said

"Today chasing that kind of total was good for me to go on from ball one and not think too much about it with the field in. I've put a lot of pressure on myself, trying too hard to score the runs in the last few games. With a big score you can just go for your shots which is what happened today. I just tried to stay still and the shots came off."
Jos Buttler on his mindset

"No question. Jos Butler is a Freak. "
Michael Vaughan, on Twitter

"Nobody has flat-batted 6s as ferociously as Jos Buttler in the history of cricket."
Piers Morgan, on Twitter

Deivarayan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Duncan on April 21, 2017, 11:27 GMT

    Do we really need to see a Twitter comment from Piers Morgan? What does he know about the history of cricket, especially at a global level.

  • Prince on April 21, 2017, 8:06 GMT

    well there are 2 flat six hitters for MI - Pollard and Buttler. Impressed by the team balance and bit disappointed that this freaking performance is keeping Simmons and MJ in bench. but happy for MI. Go champs Go

  • hafsalo on April 21, 2017, 6:41 GMT

    He only scores on the flattest of tracks

  • desilv8838765 on April 21, 2017, 5:28 GMT

    Mahela has been very patient with his players and that has given them so much confident Ex : Polard,Butler

  • avinash on April 21, 2017, 4:34 GMT

    boundaries are 55 to 60 meters to small for professional stadium can analyze batsmen or bowler's ability like this stadium , but surely butter is freak of flat sizes that bottom hand is very strong.

  • amindh6043107 on April 21, 2017, 2:57 GMT

    Anybody else concerned with the size of the boundaries ? Im not aware of the exact sizes but a second decker from amla was only 70 m ( thats the size of most grounds and some are even bigger ) and this was a long way over the boundary .Wouldnt be surprised if it was 50 . Not to take away from amla and buttlr but it is not that fun to watch . Basically if you hit it decently its a six now. No questions asked . The sizes are getting ridiculous. Some of these johnnies just hold that bat to the bal and see it flying for a one bounce four and the best bowlers in the business are trampled on . What would these batsman do , if like these 75 meter boundaries are now 50 they maje a change to make them 100 meters ( increase by the same margin ) it would be utter chaos . Barely anybody woukd have a chance of hitting a six and probably wouldnt risk it as a 90 meter would give a catching chance.That situation would clearly kill t20 batting . So why is it being done the other way ? Tokill t20 bowlin

  • Vishal on April 21, 2017, 1:40 GMT

    Kudos to Mumbai Indians for persisting with him. Even if he plays on such crucial occassions we are happy. I hope he clicks in both play off games including final. MI will clinch the title for third time unprecedentedly.

  • on April 20, 2017, 21:35 GMT

    Hi Muthu,

    Butler hit only 5 sixes while Rana Hit 7 Sixes.

  • John on April 20, 2017, 20:10 GMT

    Other articles have stated that two of Buttler's dismissals this year were umpiring mistakes. When coaches pick the team, it seems to me that they should look at the number of runs scored and divide by the number of times they should have been out, rather than their official average. Buttler did not look bad according to that statistic.

  • No featured comments at the moment.