Anrich Nortje, Rabada and DC bowlers choke RR in death overs to defend 161

Royals couldn’t chase down 39 runs off the last five overs.

Delhi Capitals
Delhi Capitals. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Delhi Capitals (DC) have pulled off a sensational come from behind win on the back of their seamers against the Rajasthan Royals. They were behind all the time defending 161 but then ended up defending 38 runs in the last five overs thanks to Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Tushar Deshpande. It was their bowling who delivered a victory for the Capitals as they registered their sixth win of the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL).

Chasing the 162-run target, the Royals got off to a scintillating start thanks to Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler. Both of them attacked from the word go. The battle between Buttler and Anrich Nortje was a delight to watch in the third over of the innings. The batsman smacked a six and two fours with his lapshot. But Nortje was fired up and delivered a 154.8 kph thunderbolt to castle Buttler and have the last laugh.

Steve Smith’s poor run in the IPL continued after which Stokes and Sanju Samson rebuilt the innings. A quick start in the powerplay meant the Royals were always ahead in the chase. However, the debutant Tushar Deshpande dismissed Stokes and the game turned on its head from here on.

Sanju Samson and Riyan Parag were back in the hut soon with the Royals getting reduced to 110/5 in the 14th over. Robin Uthappa was still in the middle and he took the charge playing with some impressive strokes. For the first time in the tournament, he looked comfortable in the middle. The equation was then 39 to get from the last five overs.

This is when some of the best death bowling of the season was in display. Ravi Ashwin bowled a tight 16th over which was backed up well by Kagiso Rabada and the man of the moment Anrich Nortje. The latter got the better of dangerous Uthappa and there was no looking back for the Capitals since then. They conceded only 25 runs in the last five overs and had pulled off a sensational win restricting the Royals for just 148/8 in their 20 overs.

Fifties from Iyer and Dhawan propel DC

Earlier, after opting to bat first, DC lost their opener Prithvi Shaw for a golden duck. Jofra Archer castled him off the very first ball of the match and then also bluffed Ajinkya Rahane with his pace to leave the Capitals at 10/2. From here on, Shreyas Iyer joined hands with Shikhar Dhawan to stitch a partnership. The latter put to rest all the talk of ‘intent’ and scored runs at a quick pace.

Dhawan scored an enterprising fifty smashing six fours and two sixes. The 85-run stand was broken in the 12th over courtesy of Shreyas Gopal with Dhawan throwing his wicket away. Iyer, at the other end, batted well and took the attack to the opposition then. But even he got out soon after his fifty in the 16th over. Kartik Tyagi got the better of him and this turned out to be a crucial moment in the innings.

With Alex Carey and Marcus Stoinis struggling to middle the ball, the Capitals could only add 29 runs in the last four overs. Jofra Archer spit venom with his all four overs and conceded only 19 runs while picking three wickets as DC were restricted to just 161 runs for the loss of seven wickets.

And the score turned out to be enough in the end thanks to the Capitals’ bowlers who delivered for the team yet again to pull off a 13-run win.

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