Prithvi Shaw's stylish half-century and an innings of brute force from Rishabh Pant helped Delhi Capitals beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by 2 wickets in the Eliminator in Vizag on Tuesday. SRH were knocked out while DC kept alive their dreams of a maiden IPL final.
On Friday, Delhi Capitals will take on defending champions Chennai Super Kings in Qualifier 2 in Vizag for a berth in the title clash against Mumbai Indians. DC have made it to the playoffs for the first time since 2012 and would be eager to make the most of this opportunity.
Prithvi Shaw led the charge for Delhi Capitals in their chase of 163. He has been out of sorts since that 99 against Kolkata Knight Riders but on Wednesday, Shaw came out all guns blazing and became only the 2nd teenager to hit 4 fifties after Shubman Gill in the Indian Premier League.
Shikhar Dhawan, Delhi's most successful batsman in the 2019 IPL. fell to Deepak Hooda and was smartly stumped by Wriddhiman Saha but DC were on course thanks to Shaw's early aggression.
Prithvi Shaw was brutal against Bhuvneshwar Kumar and was not scared to play his shots against any of SRH's star bowlers. But he played one shot too many against Khaleel Ahmed who had just dismissed Shreyas Iyer in his 2nd over. In a space of 4 balls, Delhi had lost Iyer and Shaw and Hyderabad were suddenly in the game.Rishabh Pant and Colin Munro make for a dangerous pair in T20 cricket. The asking rate was beginning to climb but Pant was not going to let it get away from him and Delhi Capitals.
Delhi Capitals took little risk against Rashid Khan who went wicketless in his first 3 overs. But his last over threatened to change the dynamics of the game. He snared Colin Munro and Axar Patel to rock the Capitals who were looking to stay on course for their first ever IPL final.
But Rishabh Pant played a few mind-numbing shots to knock Sunrisers Hyderabad out of the 2019 IPL as Delhi Capitals sayed alive to face defending champions Chennai Super Kings in Qualifier 2 in Vizag on Friday.
Sunrisers Hyderabad lost Wriddhiman Saha to Ishant Sharma early after Delhi Capitals skipper Shreyas Iyer won the toss and decided to bowl in Vizag. But Martin Guptill hit 4 sixes to help SRH to a rapid start despite the early setback.
On a slow pitch, Martin Guptill set the tone for SRH with 4 sixes but just when it looked like he was settling down for a big knock, Amit Mishra dismissed him for a 19-ball 36. Manish Pandey, who hit top form as a No.3 for Hyderabad, scraped around for a slow 30 before his stay was ended by Keemo Paul.
Kane Williamson, the Orange Cap winner in 2018, hit a stylish 70 not out against Royal Challengers Bangalore but has done precious little this season. It was the perfect opportunity for him to have a say in the Eliminator but Ishant Sharma returned to the attack to see Williamson off for a 27-ball 28.
Sunrisers Hyderabad were in serious trouble at 111 for 5 off 15.5 overs but Vijay Shankar (25 off 11) and Mohammad Nabi (20 off 13) lifted the team to a strong total.
Amit Mishra was the most economical bowler for Delhi Capitals with a spell of 4-0-16-1 while Keemo Paul (3/32) and Ishant Sharma (2/34) did the most damage with 5 wickets between them.
Sunrisers Hyderabad looked a different batting unit when David Warner and Jonny Bairstow were going great guns throughout the league stages. Warner, in fact, is still the leading run-scorer this season with 692 runs but both men had to leave as Australia and England began their World Cup preparations. In their absence, it was important for Guptill, Williamson and Pandey to stand up but they could not really do that.