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IPL 2019: Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer set up win over RCB; Delhi Capitals reach playoffs

The Delhi Capitals have qualified for the play-offs for the first time since 2012.

cricket Updated: Apr 29, 2019 08:25 IST
Khurram Habib
Khurram Habib
New Delhi
IPL 2019,Shikhar Dhawan,Shreyas Iyer
Royal Challengers Bangalore team players celebrate the dismissal of Delhi Capitals cricketer Shikhar Dhawan (C) during the 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match between Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore (AFP)

While young Rishabh Pant will pick most wicket-keeping skills and etiquette from MS Dhoni and ex-India stumpers like Kiran More, there are some that will come from other equally important quarters, like India skipper Virat Kohli. ((Full Scorecard))

The RCB skipper had a chat with Pant after the latter claimed a catch after Kohli had nicked Ishant Sharma, off the first ball of the fifth over in the RCB innings. It later turned out that the ball had bounced before settling in his right glove. Pant had gone full stretch to his right, claiming the catch vociferously. However, the umpire signalled not out while asking to check if the catch was taken cleanly and Kohli looked unhappy.

Kohli spoke to Ishant, seemingly explaining the situation, before walking down the wicket to talk to Pant. The keeper listened intently, nodding in agreement before the two touched gloves, underlining their camaraderie. A couple of balls later, Kohli hit a six over long on and then punched one past mid-on for four.

Delhi Capitals had made 187/5 with half-centuries from Shikhar Dhawan (50 – 37b, 5x4, 2x6) and skipper Shreyas Iyer (52 – 37b, 2x4, 3x6) and then restricted RCB to 171/7. The 16-run win gave Delhi 16 points, assuring them their first playoff berth since 2012.

RCB raced to 45/0 in four overs before the catch incident, and with Kohli’s boundaries crossed 50 in five overs. It was clear Kohli wanted to make an impact in front of his home crowd at Feroz Shah Kotla, and help his team maintain an outside chance to make the playoffs.

Parthiv Patel had set the tone, scoring 31 of the first 35 runs RCB got in the first three overs. With AB de Villiers and Heinrich Klaasen to come, RCB would have fancied their chances to get a fifth win.

ALSO READ: DC vs RCB Highlights, IPL 2019: Delhi Capitals win by 16 runs, qualify for the play-offs

But the batsmen got carried away by the ease with which the runs came, throwing away their wickets. Patel cut Kagiso Rabada to offer a low catch at point after pushing RCB to 60-plus in the powerplay. Kohli holed out to deep midwicket just after the powerplay phase.

De Villiers hung around for a while with Shivam Dube, who got the big hits. But he tried a big hit and was caught at deep midwicket.

Klaasen then fell to leg-spinner Amit Mishra as Pant, diving full stretch, held on to a tough chance. Mishra, playing his seventh match of the season, bowled in the middle overs, returned 2/29 in four overs to turn the game on its head.

Gurkeerat Mann tried hard with Marcus Stoinis, the two putting on 49 to bring RCB close but Pant’s brilliant catch, again a fully stretched effort, effectively ended the chase.

Earlier, 36 runs off the last two overs saw Capitals race to 187. Navdeep Saini conceded 20 runs in the final over, and Umesh Yadav leaked 16 in the 19th, after RCB seemed to have restricted Capitals following the strong start led by Shikhar.

The India opener, continuing his good run, made a 36-ball fifty, adding 68 for the second wicket with Shreyas. The start helped DC reach 81 in nine overs but the innings fizzled out a bit only to recover in the end.

First Published: Apr 28, 2019 20:13 IST