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Saturday, Nov 23, 2019

IPL 2018: How Delhi Daredevils stifled MS Dhoni’s big-hitting prowess

Harshal Patel blasted 36 off 16 balls and chipped in with the wicket of Ambati Rayudu but the all-rounder pointed out that keeping MS Dhoni quiet in the death overs was vital in Delhi Daredevils’ win over Chennai Super Kings.

cricket Updated: May 19, 2018 08:33 IST
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni walks back to the pavilion after being caught during the IPL 2018 match against Delhi Daredevils in New Delhi on May 18, 2018.
Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni walks back to the pavilion after being caught during the IPL 2018 match against Delhi Daredevils in New Delhi on May 18, 2018. (AP)

Harshal Patel, the 27-year-old Delhi Daredevils’ all-rounder, had contributed a vital 36* off just 16 balls to help Delhi Daredevils reach a competitive 162/6 against Chennai Super Kings at the Feroz Shah Kotla on Friday. (MATCH REPORT)

With the ball, he got the vital wicket of Ambati Rayudu for 50. At 70/2 in 10 overs chasing 163, Delhi Daredevils were on top. But Chennai Super Kings had MS Dhoni left, who had regained his finishing prowess of old in IPL 2018. (HIGHLIGHTS) (FULL SCORECARD)

Patel, in combination with Amit Mishra, Sandeep Lamichhane and Trent Boult, delivered a stellar death overs performance to give Delhi Daredevils a 34-run win and stall CSK’s bid to finish in the top two.

Speaking after the match, Patel, who won the Man of the Match award for his all-round exploits, revealed the strategy in keeping Dhoni quiet. “We knew what his strong zones were. The plan was simple. We did not bowl in the zones where he could hit us. We wanted to bowl in the areas where he is not really comfortable. We came up with a plan to bowl slow and wide to him and we executed it well,” Patel said.

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At 102/5 after 15 overs, Delhi Daredevils were in danger of being restricted to a below-par score. However, Patel shared a 65-run stand with Vijay Shankar (36*) off 32 balls and DD blasted 60 runs in the last five overs which boosted them to a competitive score on a sluggish deck.

“We had a strategic time-out in the 16th over and basically we decided that if we get 140, it will be a fighting total. The way Vijay and I batted in the last three overs was really special,” Patel said.

Brave move by Iyer

Chasing 163, Shreyas Iyer decided to give the second over of the powerplay to Nepal legspinner Sandeep Lamichhane and the youngster did not disappoint by giving away just two runs. Patel said the move by Iyer was a ‘brave’ one.

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“The way the game was going, Lamichhane was bowling well. Shane Watson was finding it difficult to pick him. Iyer made a brave call and decided to give him the second over. Wickets early were important for us. That was the only thought,” Patel said.

Delhi Daredevils face Mumbai Indians in the last league game of IPL 2018 and a loss for Rohit Sharma’s side will result in their elimination from the play-off race.