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IPL 2018: Match 32, Rajasthan Royals vs Delhi Daredevils – Expectation vs Reality

Read up on what we might expect from this high-octane clash while we wait for the reality to come our way.

Trent Boult
Trent Boult of Delhi Daredevils. (Photo: Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

Come Wednesday and we’ll witness a high-octane encounter between the Rajasthan Royals (RR) and the Delhi Daredevils (DD). While the former team has fought tooth and nail to be ahead in the race, IPL 2018 has not been too kind on the latter. With the match schedule fast drawing to a close before the four top teams go through to the playoffs, this match is bound to be a battle of survival for both the sides.

The Rajasthan Royals have done fairly in the tournament so far, with 3 wins out of 7 matches. Sitting at the fifth position in the points table, the Ajinkya Rahane-led side will be eager to cross to the other side and for that, they need a victory very soon. Although the Royals must’ve been rattled a fair bit by their failure to chase down a seemingly-low total of 152 runs against the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the previous match, they’ll look to put the defeat behind them and come out all guns blazing against DD.

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Delhi Daredevils, on the other hand, have only one option in front of them and that is to win. Having lost to the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Monday (April 30), DD have to win all 6 of their upcoming encounters to have a shot at qualifying for the next stage of the tournament. After the unceremonious hullabaloo of Gautam Gambhir stepping down as the skipper of the side, young Shreyas Iyer has now been entrusted with the responsibility of steering his team towards something miraculous. It’ll be interesting to see how DD approach the game and if they’re able to channel their desperation into the passionate hunger for a much-needed victory.

We all have some expectations from such a match where the stakes are so high. Here are our expectations from the game. What are yours?

Iyer-Pant setting the game on fire

We all have an idea of how destructive the young pair of Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant can be. If DD are to get back to winning ways in the IPL, they’ll need a gargantuan victory, so as to get them those crucial 2 points along with a major boost to their Net Run Rate (NRR). Who better to set up the stage for their batting order other than these two youngsters? Wicketkeeper-batsman of the team, Pant has already proved what an asset he can be for the team in pressure situations and his sizzling knock worth 85 runs against the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) bears testimony to the young man’s capabilities.

On the other hand, Iyer smashed an unbeaten 93 runs off just 40 balls in the very first match of DD under his captaincy. The added weight of leading the team might just have triggered that extra resilience and determination in the young man and he can be expected to take the crease with the intent of tearing the opposition’s bowling attack apart. If the duo, aided by another able batsman in the form of Prithvi Shaw is able to execute their batting prowess in proper tandem in order to save their team from getting knocked out at the league stage, DD are definitely in with a chance of winning their upcoming encounter.

Jofra Archer to wave magic with the ball

Not many were familiar with the name of Jofra Chioke Archer before the start of the IPL 2018. Halfway through the tournament, the wiry pacer has startled one and all with his bowling performances in just 2 games. He’s currently the highest wicket-taker with the best bowling average for the RR side, with 6 wickets in his kitty at an average of 8.00 and an appreciable economy rate of 6.00.

Archer can be expected to play to the best of his abilities to see his team through to the top 4 slot. With young and comparatively inexperienced batsman at the opposite end, Archer will look to exploit the conditions at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi and rip through the top and middle order of RR.

If he’s able to repeat the performance he delivered against the Mumbai Indians (MI) a week ago which won him the ‘Player of the Match’ award and consisted 3 wickets in 4 overs while conceding 22 runs, he’s sure to become a serious thorn in the way of DD and might be able to get his team the all-important 2 points next to their name on the table.

Jofra-Archer

Here’s the reality check right after the match…

Iyer and Pant live up to expectations

Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant got together in the 8th over of the innings. What followed next was an absolute carnage! The future duo of the Indian batting line-up just pummelled the poor bowling from the Royals added 92 runs off just 43 balls which propelled the score of Delhi towards 200 in the 18-over game.

Pant, in particular, was absolutely magnificent as put an exhibition of his powerful strokes as his partner Iyer was classy once again playing a captain’s knock. They didn’t spare any bowler of the opposition and made things extremely tough for the best in the business.

Boult wins it despite Buttler blitz

Trent Boult was entrusted with the responsibility to bowl the final over with 15 runs in the bank. The Kiwi bowler didn’t disappoint and bowled his line and lengths perfectly. Despite his brilliant execution, the game went down to the last ball with Krishnappa Gowtham on strike as the Royals needed 6 runs to win the game and knock the Daredevils out of the tournament. But that was not to be courtesy Boult who bowled a beauty of a ball to save the blushes for his team.

Though It even came down to the last ball was only due to Jos Buttler who was given the license of going bonkers from the word go. He just blazed his way from the very first ball and tore apart the young Avesh Khan by smashing him for 23 runs in one over. Buttler also scored his half-century off just 18 balls which lightened up the Kotla Stadium. However, his heroics were cut-short by Amit Mishra but not before scoring 67 off 26 balls.

Sadly, he ended up on the losing side with his side losing the thriller by just 4 runs.

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