Delhi Capitals outclass Royal Challengers Bangalore to reach the IPL Playoffs
Delhi Capitals (DC) became the 2nd team after Chennai Super Kings to qualify for the IPL 2019 playoffs after beating Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by 16 runs in at the Ferozshah Kotla today.
After having posted 187/5 riding on half-centuries from opener Shikhar Dhawan (50) and skipper Shreyas Iyer (52), the Capitals bowlers returned to stifle the superstar batting lineup of RCB to snap their 3-match winning streak.
With two matches left to play, Delhi now find themselves at the top of the points table with 16 points from 12 games but a better net-run-rate than erstwhile leaders CSK.
Bangalore, on the other hand, find themselves on the brink of missing out on a spot in the playoffs as they still are at the bottom with just 8 points after 12 matches.
After winning the toss and opting to bat on a baked Kotla pitch, DC were off to a great start with Prithvi shaw and Dhawan finding their range early.
But Umesh Yadav got rid of Shaw (18) in the 4th over of the innings with a short ball. The captain Iyer joined Dhawan in the middle and the duo kpet scoring with freedom.
While Dhawan unfurled his vast range of strokes on both sides of the wicket, Iyer took special liking to Yuzvendra Chahal, hitting him for three monstrous sixes.
But the wrist-spinner returned to send back Dhawan in the 13th over, soon after he crossed his fifty off 36 balls when he was caught by Washington Sundar at short fine-leg. In his next over, Chahal also removed the big-hitting Rishabh Pant for just 7 as RCB looked to claw their way back into the match.
When DC lost Iyer in the next over, it seemed like RCB would be able to limit Capitals to a low score. But a few lusty blows from Axar Patel and Shane Rutherford helped RCB post 187.
In reply, Parthiv Patel and Virat Kohli started the chase in an explosive fashion with Patel in particular very severe on anything missing it's line.
The wicket-keeper was particularly severe on young spinner Sandeep Lamichhane hitting him for three boundaries in the 3rd over, while Kohli went about his business at the other end.
Kagiso Rabada finally broke the partnership by getting Parthiv (39) caught by a flying Axar Patel at point. Soon after Kohli (23) departed too off the bowling of Patel to give Delhi a foot in the door.
The dismissals of AB de Villiers (17), Hienrich Klaasen (3) and Shivam Dube (24) within a space of 9 deliveries truly broke the back of RCB's batting. Amit Mishra (2/29) was the chief destroyer.
But Marcus Stoinis and Gurkeerat Singh kept the visitors in the hunt with a flurry of boundaries before Ishant Sharma returned to send back Singh having him caught behind the stumps.
With 26 needed off the last over, Stoinis failed to knock off Rabada over the fence with the bowler adding all-rounder Sundar to his burgeoning wickets tally, thereby bringing DC a welcome victory.