Delhi Capitals (DC) moved to the top of the points table after they beat Rajasthan Royals by (RR) 13 runs in Match 31 of the Dream11 Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Needing 162 runs to win, Ben Stokes hit a four on the first ball, but could have been run-out had Ajinkya Rahane pulled off a direct-hit. RR managed to score 21 off the first two overs as Stokes and Buttler hit three and one four each.
The third over saw Buttler taking on Anrich Nortje before getting out in the same over. The RR wicketkeeper-batsman creamed a six off the first ball and then scooped two for four. But Nortje had the last laugh as ended the Buttler cameo, breaking through his defence to give DC their first breakthrough.
DC introduced spin in the fourth over and the move paid dividends as R Ashwin held on to a caught and bowled chance to dismiss Steve Smith for 1. RR though, managed to score fifty in the powerplay, with Stokes scoring 25 of those runs.
Meanwhile, Iyer had to leave the field after he dived rather awkwardly while saving a boundary.
Sanju Samson creamed two maximums before Stokes hit two fours over the course of the next three overs to push RR past 80 at the end of the ninth over.
The Samson-Stokes pair was in a touching distance to complete the fifty-run stand, but DC managed to strike for the third time in the night as Tushar Deshpande, making his IPL debut, broke the partnership getting Stokes out in the deep for 41 in the 11th over. Axar, then gave DC their fourth wicket after he ended Sanju Samson’s 18-ball 25-run innings.
Robin Uthappa hit a four and a six off Nortje in the 13th over as RR brought up their hundred. But, RR lost their fifth wicket in the next over as a mix-up between Uthappa and Riyan Parag saw the latter walk back to the dug-out.
RR were 115/5 after the end of the 14th over and needed 47 from the last six to seal a win.
Rahul Tewatia got a reprieve in the 15th over as Nortje could not hold on to a catch at fine-leg. R Ashwin then bowled a tight 16th over, conceding just two runs. RR moved to 133/5 after scoring 8 off the 17th over bowled by Kagiso Rabada, with Tewatia playing a ramp.
DC then conceded just 7 runs over the next two overs, courtesy Nortje and Rabada.
Nortje picked his second wicket of the match as Uthappa, after dancing down the ground, could not connect his bat with the ball and got bowled. Rabada bowled the penultimate over and picked the wicket of Archer and gave away just three runs.
RR needed 22 runs in the final over with Tewatia still in the middle and debutant Deshpande bowling the last over of the match.
While the right-arm pacer started the over with a wide, he conceded not more than nine runs and picked a wicket as DC returned to winning ways, beating RR by 13 runs.
Earlier, Jofra Archer struck on the first ball of the match as he disturbed the timber to dismiss Prithvi Shaw. The right-arm pacer picked his second wicket in the powerplay after Ajinkya Rahane mistimed his pull to give an easy catch to Robin Uthappa at mid-on.
Shikhar Dhawan, who was coming into this game on the back of his unbeaten 69 against Mumbai Indians, counterattacked as he and Shreyas Iyer scored 35 runs in the next three overs to take their side to 47/2 at the end of six overs.
The pair completed the fifty-run stand in the eighth over after Dhawan slog-swept one for four. DC, at the halfway stage, were 79/2.
In the 11th over, RR had a chance to run-out Dhawan but Rahul Tewatia missed a direct hit and Dhawan got a life. In the next over, the left-hander brought up his second successive fifty.
Dhawan, though got out soon after notching up his half-century, after he mistimed his reverse-sweep and was caught at the short third-man off Shreyas Gopal’s bowling.
DC moved past hundred in the 13th over and Iyer completed his 1000 runs as IPL. Two overs later, Iyer, who got a life despite Ben Stokes’ fine effort near the boundary rope, brought up his half-century.
While DC were eying a big finish, RR managed to pull back the things in the final stage of the innings, conceding just 32 runs in the last five overs.
The DC skipper got out for 53 in the 16th over after he mistimed his shot and Archer completed the catch.
While DC moved past 150 in the 19th over, Archer went on to pick his third wicket of the match, dismissing the big-hitting Marcus Stoinis. Jaydev Unadkat picked up two wickets in the final over as DC posted 161/7 on the board.
Brief Scores: Delhi Capitals 161/7 (Shikhar Dhawan 57, Shreyas Iyer 53; Jofra Archer 3/19) beat Rajasthan Royals 148/8 (Ben Stokes 41, Robin Uthappa 32; Anrich Nortje 2/33) by 13 runs