IPL 2018: Match 42, DD vs SRH, Review- Pantastic knock couldn't save Delhi from elimination

Sunrisers Hyderabad have now officially qualified for the playoffs and DD are knocked out.

Rishabh Pant
Delhi Daredevils’ Rishabh Pant in action. (Photo by Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

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The Delhi Daredevils (DD), prior to the match, had a slender chance to stay alive in the tournament. Their opponents were the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) who have been in prime form in the eleventh edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Both teams had contrasting aims from the encounter. While the Sunrisers hoped to qualify for the playoffs, Shreyas Iyer’s men desperately needed a win.

The match wasn’t devoid of any entertainment as batsmen from both teams haemorrhaged runs. Delhi, courtesy of Rishabh Pant’s ballistic knock, scored 187 runs, but the Sunrisers batsmen made a mockery of the target and emerged victorious with nine wickets in hand. With yet another defeat, Delhi have been eliminated from the tournament and Sunrisers have officially qualified for the playoffs.

Pant vandalize the visitors

The pitch seemed a tad on the drier side at the start and hence, Iyer won the toss and elected to bat first. Prithvi Shaw and Jason Roy commenced proceedings for the Daredevils. The ball gripped on the surface and hence both the batsmen strained to find the boundaries. Shakib Al Hasan was introduced into the attack and he nipped out both the openers in consecutive deliveries and that put serious pressure on the batsmen.

The onus was then on Iyer and Rishabh Pant to resurrect the innings for the home team. However, just when the partnership looked settled, Iyer got himself tangled into a dreadful mix-up, which led to his run-out. Harshal Patel, who was drafted in for today’s game took charge above the likes of Glenn Maxwell and Vijay Shankar. However, he didn’t disappoint and played a useful hand of 24 runs from 17 balls.

More importantly, he stitched a 55-run stand along with Pant, which garnered momentum for DD. Nevertheless, he became the second batsman to be run out. Meanwhile, Pant was in a zone of his own and smashed the bowlers with sheer disdain. He brought up his half-century with a massive six off Shakib Al Hasan over the midwicket boundary.

Nonetheless, Pant went hell for leather in the last six overs and mustered 89 runs in for Delhi. He raced away to his maiden century in IPL in a mere 56 balls, which took the sting out of the Sunrisers’ bowling attack. He plundered 26 runs off the final over by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and guided DD to a competitive target of 187 runs. He scored 128 runs off 63 balls, which included 15 boundaries and six sixes.

Dhawan and Williamson storm SRH to victory

The Sunrisers don’t possess a whole lot of firepower in the batting armoury, but the target was still achievable. Alex Hales and Shikhar Dhawan opened the batting. Hales looked good for his brief knock but was trapped in front by Harshal Patel for 14 runs. Kane Williamson joined Dhawan at the wicket and was in with an uphill task to get their team home.

However, they played some calculated strokes and never allowed the pressure to unnerve them. Dhawan, who wasn’t in the greatest on nicks following his elbow injury, stepped on the gas and accomplished his fifty in 29 balls. On the other hand, Kane turned the strike over and peppered the boundaries consistently enough to keep chipping away at the target.

The duo brought up their century partnership in 61 balls and Delhi well and truly looked down the barrel at yet another defeat. Meanwhile, the New Zealand batsman brought up his sixth IPL half-century this season and made the run-chase completely one-sided. In the last five overs, SRH needed 36 runs, which was expected to be a stroll in the park, especially when the Kane-Shikhar duo were in the middle.

The pitch offered peanuts to the Delhi bowlers as both batsmen piled on the agony for them. The bowlers tried their hearts out but couldn’t pose any sort of threat to the might of the SRH batsmen who looked all at ease throughout the run chase. The Orange Army won the game with seven balls to spare. Meanwhile, the next three games will be nothing, but mere formalities for the Delhi franchise.

Brief Scores

Delhi Daredevils: 187/5 in 20 overs; Rishabh Pant 128*, Harshal Patel 24; Shakib Al Hasan 2/27, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 1/51

Sunrisers Hyderabad: 191/1 in 18.5 overs; Shikhar Dhawan 92*, Kane Williamson 83*; Harshal Patel 1/32

Sunrisers Hyderabad beat Delhi Daredevils by nine wickets

Player of the Match: Shikhar Dhawan