Shikhar Dhawan’s dazzling masterclass powers Delhi to a great run chase in a 6 wicket win over Punjab Kings

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Image credits. Crictracker

It was a high scoring run feast between the Delhi Capitals and Punjab Kings at Mumbai . The North Indian derby finally went in favour of Delhi Capitals convincingly as the Punjab Kings bowling attack could not rise to the occasion in trying to defend a big chase.

Sent in to bat first Punjab started in whirlwind fashion with Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul going after the formidable Delhi Capitals bowling attack, unfurling dazzling strokes all around the stadium. The Delhi bowling attack and their dugout was stunned by the onslaught of Mayank in particular as he plundered a rapid 69 off 36 balls with 7 fours and 4 sixes in the company of KL Rahul who was playing second fiddle . In powerplay, they added 59/0. Finally, in the 12th over Mayank sliced left armer Meriwala to sweeper cover to provide Delhi with their first breakthrough.

Image credits dnaindia

After Mayank’s wicket, there was a slow down with Rahul (61 off 51 balls) not really unleashing himself trying to play through the innings . Finally, he was dismissed by Rabada , caught at midwicket and with Gayle and Pooran falling cheaply , Punjab could not take forward the momentum created by Mayank’s knock .

However, Deepak Hooda (22 off 13 balls) and Shahrukh Khan (15 off 5 balls) managed to get some big hits in the last couple of overs to take Punjab to 195/4, a par score but could have been 20 runs more considering the start provided by Mayank in particular. For Capitals , Ashwin bowled his 4 overs with 7 economy rate (0/28) and Avesh (1/33) bowled with 8.25 economy which was extremely creditable performances .

Chasing the mammoth target Shaw and Dhawan started in belligerent fashion rattling up 59 in for 1st wicket , Shaw in particular was in destructive form driving and pulling in murderous style reaching 32 off 17 balls enjoying the pace provided by most of Punjab bowlers till Arshdeep provided a slower delivery which he skied to square leg for Gayle to catch .

After Shaw’s dismissal it was Shikhar Dhawan show all the way. What a stunning innings he played !! He unleashed his full repertoire , hitting flowing off drives , on drives , flicks off his pads , fierce pull shots and sweeps off both pace and spin as the Punjab bowling were at a loss how to bowl at him. While Dhawan plundered runs at will , Steve Smith (9) playing his first match of the season replacing Rahane at three, struggled to get the ball away finally hitting a catch high towards deep point to Meredith off Jhye Richardson for an all-Australian dismissal .

Meanwhile the Dhawan show was on but with the century beckoning , he shuffled too far across trying to sweep Richardson’s slower ball and was bowled for a dazzling 92 off 49 balls . Though Delhi lost Pant (15) cheaply , Marcus Stoinis (22 off 13 balls ) and Lalit Yadav (12 off 6 balls) ensured that Delhi won on a canter by 6 wickets with 10 balls remaining .

Punjab bowling was hurting against the onslaught started by Shaw and carried through by Dhawan . Only Arshdeep Singh (1/22) held on his own with 7 economy but it was a carnage for the rest of the bowlers including the experienced Shami and the promising Aussie duo of Richardson and Meredith . Also the dew factor affected the bowlers’ performances.

Dhawan for his majestic innings was the clear man of the match . Punjab after two straight losses will have to worry with their bowling as runs are being leaked by their prime bowlers .

Brief scores

Delhi Capitals won by 6 wickets

PBKS 195/4 (20 Ovs) 

Batting

Mayank 69(36)

Rahul(c & wk) 61(51)

Bowling

Avesh Khan 1/33

Woakes 1/42

DC 198/4 (18.2 Ovs) 

Batting

Dhawan 92(49)

Prithvi Shaw 32(17)

Bowling

J Richardson 2/41

Arshdeep Singh 1/22

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