Abu Dhabi, Oct 30 (IANS) Rajasthan Royals (RR) captain Steve Smith has said that all-rounder Ben Stokes is a valuable player after the latter starred in his team’s seven-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Friday.
Stokes smashed 50 off 26 balls to get RR off to a flying start in their chase of 186 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Stokes also took the all-important wicket of KXIP captain KL Rahul, which broke a 120-run stand between the latter and Chris Gayle, and that of Rahul Tewatia. Additionally, he also took a stunning catch to dismiss Mandeep Singh in the first over.
“The last two games he has been exceptional. He has good innovation, and hits the ball in weird areas. He is a valuable player, one of the best in the world,” said Smith.
Stokes stormed back to form in RR’s previous game against Mumbai Indians with an unbeaten 107.
The win is RR’s second consecutive victory in the tournament and keeps them in the hunt for a spot in the playoffs.
“Would have been great to win a few (matches) in the middle. But tournaments are about peaking at the right time. We still need to do our bit and need some other results to go our way. Nice to get over the line comfortably. Helps the NRR (net run rate),” said Smith.