Pune v Delhi, IPL 2012, Pune April 24, 2012

Sehwag keeps Delhi Daredevils at No. 1


Delhi Daredevils 148 for 2 (Sehwag 87*) beat Pune Warriors 146 for 2 (Pandey 80*) by eight wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Delhi Daredevils strengthened their reputation as the team to beat in IPL 2012 and marched to a convincing victory over Pune Warriors at the Subrata Roy Stadium, with four overs to spare. Warriors had won both previous matches at their new home stadium but were unable to collect a third success after posting too few runs with the bat despite a third-wicket stand of 145 between Manish Pandey and Robin Uthappa.

Warriors bowlers had few answers for Virender Sehwag and struggled to keep him quiet as they were unable to find the right lines, despite a stern team talk by Allan Donald at the innings break. Their only success came with the run-out of Mahela Jayawardene and wicket of Kevin Pietersen, who top-edged to mid-on. Warriors' batsmen were made to rue a slow start and an inability to get going despite plundering 47 runs off the last four overs.

Irfan Pathan and Morne Morkel did early damage to Warriors and removed Jesse Ryder and Sourav Ganguly in the first two overs. Ryder was guilty of a lazy push in front and was bowled by Irfan's second ball, which kept low and snuck through him and Ganguly sliced Morkel to third man. Warriors were 2 for 2 and needed a quick recovery.

Pandey and Uthappa put up a solid resistance and balanced caution with the need to attack fairly well early on. Pandey opened the boundary count with a confident pull over mid-on off Irfan and a superb drive on the up off Umesh Yadav.

Just as the pair started to break the shackles, Daredevils left-arm spin duo of Pawan Negi and Shahbaz Nadeem made sure they were restrained again. They gave away just 33 runs in the six overs they bowled in tandem. Negi should also have had the wicket of Pandey to his name. Pandey hit a full ball straight to Kevin Pietersen at long-on but Pietersen seemed to think it would not carry to him and allowed it fall safely.

Nadeem also had a chance to claim Pandey's wicket, when the batsmen hit a delivery straight back to him in his final over. The ball was hit hard and Nadeem got his hands up in time but could not hold on. Despite putting down both chances Pandey offered them, Daredevils were still able to keep a lid on Warriors.

Pandey looked to go bigger in the last six overs and started by smacking Irfan for a four down the ground to reach his half-century off 40 balls. He could not get away though, as Negi's final over kept the pressure on, although he too dropped a return catch which would have sent Pandey back.

The only option was to target the quicks at the end. Pandey used Umesh Yadav's extra pace to his advantage, hitting him over long-on and past third man while Uthappa tried the same off Morkel. He inside-edged a yorker four four and smacked a ball to long-on before scooping a ball over short fine leg to bring up his half-century. Both batsmen played fine knocks but Sehwag's proved better.

Daredevils' captain started with a mix of fortune and fury as he was involved in the mix-up which saw Jayawardene run out and inside edged Ashish Nehra for four. In between those, he pulled Nehra in front of square to show some measure of control and seized the rest of it against Luke Wight. He helped a ball to fine leg for four and smashed a slower one over long-on for six. He also won the battle of the captains when he too two boundaries off Ganguly's only over.

With Kevin Pietersen at the other end, Sehwag took Daredevils halfway to their target by the time the time out was called after seven overs. When Pietersen was caught by Ryder for 27, Daredevils needed just 36 more to win. Ross Taylor got some much needed time at the crease and accompanied Sehwag for the last rites. Sehwag continued to pepper the boundary rope and won the match with a six over long-on to create some distance between Daredevils and their rivals at the top of the table.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Micheal on April 28, 2012, 0:01 GMT

    Ganguly and Dhoni are not good captains compared to Sanga, Mahela, Ponting and cleark. On the other hand, IPL decrease the quality of these great players..

  • Dummy4 on April 27, 2012, 19:22 GMT

    sehwaq delhi .........

  • Swapnoneel on April 26, 2012, 14:22 GMT

    @Freddie.Dcosta: So you do agree with my earlier statement that ganguly indeed makes the most important number 3 position vulnerable. Also ganguly cannot achieve anything more in cricket, given his age and form. He is there at IPL5 only because of his arrogance and pride (which he will lose for sure after the tournament - given what his figures would be at this rate). Also ganguly is not courageous. He didn't bowl again in pune, after viru bashed him in his solitary over. This tells us that even ganguly knows his spell at kotla was a fluke! The fact is he should contribute to PWI as a coach/mentor/12th man. In the field he'll only lose them matches with his slow batting, sloppy fielding, and snail-like running!

  • Freddie on April 26, 2012, 2:59 GMT

    @passionate_cricket_follower - I don't think guys like Smith will feel any pressure if the batsman before gets out at low or high score. In fact anyone who feels pressure in such situations should not be playing T20 at all. Ganguly is not afraid of taking the risk of getting out cheaply. And only those who take risks can achieve anything in cricket as in life. His decision to bowl at Kevin Pietersen on Kotla was one such daring decision.

  • Swapnoneel on April 25, 2012, 19:36 GMT

    @Freddie.Dcosta: but the fact is (and even ganguly himself knows this) he'll connect in 1 out of 10 matches. and if you get out by scoring low, or slow at number 3 in T20, you put a lot of pressure on the batsmen to follow. so ganguly (if at all he's in the side) should come in at number 5 or 6. he might try number 3 only if PWI chases something like 120.

  • Swapnoneel on April 25, 2012, 19:33 GMT

    @GR2020 : in fact its just the opposite. if ganguly scored 60 off 58, the hoard of dadu lovers would say he "anchored" the innings. that's exactly what they said when he consumed 35 odd deliveries for his 41 at kotla (his only innings of any substance in ipl 2012). he should make way for Tamim at no 3.

  • Freddie on April 25, 2012, 13:39 GMT

    @RajuSalvi Ganguly is not being selfish at all, even if he comes up the order, he is batting in the interest of the team. He does not hang around and tries to play big shots from the beginning. If he connects, he will get good quick runs, if he doesn't he gets out and affords chance to the next big hitter...

  • Gangesh on April 25, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    Clearly two reasons why Pune lost...One Snails pace batting by Robin..If it was Saurav who had made 60 from 58, people would have ate his head up...I still see some people blaming him for occupying No.3 spot...Anyways...And second- our great Mr. Nehra who continues to get smashed all over and outside the park, every other game and keeps on cribbing that it is ok and these things happen and it is very difficult to bowl the first two and the last two overs...

  • Raju on April 25, 2012, 12:33 GMT

    Ganguly should bat for PWI at no. 6 or after & should not be selfish to open or bat at no. 3 to prove to the world he can bat in T20 rather he should be selfless in promoting all the other middle order batsman who are much better than him in running between the wickets & keeping score board busy as well big hits to increase the scoring run rate. Ganguly cannot run faster nor can he convert 1 into 2s, 2 into 3s. He had been run out most of the times in this IPL. His stay at crease adds the pressure to the team as he does not score freely & even if he gets out early it adds pressure (of one wicket down not his wicket) to the team. Openers or one down batsman should not score a run a ball figure ever in T20 game. DD should include Andre Russel in place of Ross Taylor, a clean striker of the ball. Whenever he will get a chance to bat in favourable conditions he will surely steal the limelight.

  • SivaDatta on April 25, 2012, 8:47 GMT

    great to see sehwag in such a good form..

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