The Delhi Capitals climbed back to second position in the VIVO IPL 2019 standings after they defeated the Rajasthan Royals by five wickets in Match 53 played at the Feroz Shah Kotla Ground on Saturday evening. After restricting the visitors to 115-9, the Delhi Capitals chased down the runs in 16.1 overs.
Despite facing an asking rate of 5.80, the Delhi Capitals made things a little difficult for themselves by losing five wickets in their chase. The openers Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw added 28 runs in three overs; but their dismissals off successive deliveries in the fourth over meant there were two new batmen in the middle and the hosts had to start all over again. The Delhi Capitals skipper Shreyas Iyerand Rishabh Pant batted with authority on a surface where stroke-making was extremely difficult; Shreyas scored 15 from 9 balls – which included two sixes down the ground, while Pant steered the chase with a measured unbeaten half-century.
For the Rajasthan Royals, the wickets were shared by Ish Sodhi (3-26) and Shreyas Gopal (2-21), while the off-spinner K Gowtham bowled his four overs tidily, conceding only 16 runs.
In the afternoon, the Rajasthan Royals didn’t capitalise on the advantage they had after winning the toss; they lost four wickets in the powerplay and were playing catch-up thereafter. The visitors continued to lose wickets at regular intervals and slipped to 65 for 7 in the fourteenth over; at that stage, being bowled out for less than 100 was a distinct possibility. But Parag and Ish Sodhi added 30 runs for the eighth wicket in what would be the biggest partnership of the innings; the pair took 18 runs off the 17th over bowled by Ishant Sharma.
Riyan them helped finish the innings on a high; he hit Trent Boult for two sixes in the final over as 15 runs were added to the Rajasthan Royals total.
For the Delhi Capitals, Ishant Sharma did the damage with the new ball, Amit Mishra strangled the Royals batsmen in the middle overs, and Trent Boult picked up two wickets at the end. Axar Patel bowled his four overs for 16 runs, but didn’t have any wickets to show for his disciplined bowling.
Standout batting performances
On a surface where run-scoring was an arduous task, Rishabh Pant impressed with his application. The Delhi Capitals wicketkeeper-batsman, who walked out to bat in the fourth over, did not score off his first nine deliveries. But after coming to terms with the surface, he switched gears in one instant– it was as if someone had switched on a button; he opened his account with a boundary off Ish Sodhi, and then collected consecutive sixes off Riyan Parag. He then took his foot off the accelerator for a brief while, concentrating on picking up the singles. But when the target was in sight, he once again cut loose, and hit three sixes and a boundary to power his team across the finish line. Pant ended 53 not out; his 38-ball knock contained two boundaries and five sixes. To put Pant’s innings in context, none of the other Delhi Capitals batsmen made more than 16.
Earlier in the afternoon, after his older and more experienced teammates batting higher up the order had all been dismissed playing shots they should have avoided, Riyan Paragput on one outstanding show. The 17-year old appeared to have assessedthe surface very early in his knock and figured out which strokes would work and which strokes had to be avoided; he displayed good temperament, applied himself well and constructed an innings.
Despite his team losing wickets at the other end, never once did Riyan lose his poise or look agitated. He was a picture of calm right through his 49-ball stay at the crease; the youngster picked up boundaries when the opportunity presented itself, but generally focussed on picking up singles and twos. It was only in the final over that he flexed his muscles; Trent Boult offered him the length and room in the final over, and the youngster was only too happy to deposit the ball into the stands – the second of the sixes brought up his maiden half-century too.
Standout bowling performance
Amit Mishra was introduced into the attack in the eighth over when the Rajasthan Royals were 35 for 4. By the time he had bowled out his four overs, the Royals had slipped to 67 for 7; all the damage in between was done by the veteran leg-spinner.
Mishra’s first two cost him 13 runs. In his third over, he tossed one up wide outside the off stump, beat a charging Shreyas Gopal and wicket-keeper Pant had enough time to effect a stumping. The following delivery was a perfect leg-break that pitched on off, turned just enough to take the outside edge of Stuart Binny’s bat as the batsman was leaning forward to defend.
Mishra should have had a hat-trick too; K Gowtham miscued an attempted slog, but Trent Boult dropped a catch at mid-on. Mishra eventually had the batsman caught at long-off in his final over to finish with figures of 4-0-17-3.
Notable Support Act – Bowling
In the absence of Kagiso Rabada, the Delhi Capitals needed one of the other bowlers to step up. Ishant Sharma answered that call; he gauged the surface very quickly and bowled a lot of change-up deliveries. Ajinkya Rahane and Liam Livingstone were both deceived by slower deliveries, while MahipalLomror edged one that kicked up from the surface a little.Ishant finished with season-best figures of 3 for 38.
Stat of the Match
Aged 17 years and 175 days, Riyan Parag became the youngest player to score a half-century in the IPL.
Delhi Capitals: 121-5 in 16.1 overs (Rishabh Pant 53*, Ish Sodhi 3-26) defeated
Rajasthan Royals: 115-9 (Riyan Parag 50, Ishant Sharma 3-38, Amit Mishra 3-17) by 5 wickets.
Man of the Match
Amit Mishra, for his bowling figures of 4-0-17-3.