Delhi Capitals powered its way to the top of the IPL points table after decimating Chennai Super Kings by 44 runs at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
Asked to bat first, Delhi rode on Prithvi Shaw’s brilliant 43-ball 64 and handy contributions from Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant to post a challenging 175 for the loss of three wickets in 20 overs.
In reply, Chennai, deprived of a healthy start once again, managed to garner 131 for the loss of seven wickets.
Winning skipper Shreyas Iyer credited his openers, Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan, for the win and also heaped praise on his fast bowlers – Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje.
Rabada, the Purple Cap holder with five wickets in the tournament so far, took a three-wicket haul, while Nortje picked two to choke Chennai.
“The way the openers started gave us a lot of confidence and the finish was good too. I am lucky to have KG and Nortje in the team. It’s important to stick together as a team and we need to enjoy each other’s success,” Iyer said at the post-match presentation.
The skipper further said that he is happy with the performance and revealed the game plan.
“In the team meeting we decided that we are going to assess the batting conditions early and then play accordingly,” he said.
Player of the match for his breezy half-century, Shaw said he corrected his earlier mistakes that led to his downfall and was determined to make an impression.
“In the start you have to see how the wicket is, playing along the ground is more important. I was striking the ball well last year as well, but I was making silly mistakes. This time I decided to play more ground shots,” he said.
Rabada, who accounted the wickets of Faf du Plessis, MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja said that he was happy in executing his plans and praised the spin duo of Axar Patel and Amit Mishra for bowling well in the middle overs, that allowed the pacers to execute their plans in the death overs.
While Axar removed the dangerous Shane Watson, Mishra bowled a tight spell of 4-0-23-0.
“I just try and hit the ball in good areas and try to execute my plans. Luckily, I got wickets but most importantly we won tonight. I try to adjust to what is happening and get the team in a winning position. The wickets are by-products,” Rabada said.
“Spinners bowled remarkably well throughout, it wasn’t too dewy and was gripping. Axar bowled really well and has been economical. Mishra is really a skilful bowler and they controlled the middle overs and that gave us the opportunity to strangle at the death,” he added.