Gujarat Lions v Delhi Daredevils, IPL 2017, Kanpur May 10, 2017

Shreyas Iyer's 96 pulls Daredevils through in 196 chase


Delhi Daredevils 197 for 8 (Iyer 96, Nair 30, Faulkner 2-39) beat Gujarat Lions 195 for 5 (Finch 69, Karthik 40) by two wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

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Highlights - Iyer bosses Delhi's 196 chase

Before Wednesday, Gujarat Lions had only won one match while batting first in the IPL, in 12 attempts. The last time they had played Delhi Daredevils, they had failed to defend 208. Now, sent in to bat, they made 195, and ended up on the losing side yet again, their bowling falling apart at critical moments.

Daredevils' match-winner, yet again, came from their group of young, sometimes inconsistent, but undoubtedly gifted Indian batsmen. At the Feroz Shah Kotla, Daredevils had romped home with 15 balls to spare, after Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson added 143 in 63 balls.

Here, at Green Park, they had to pull off a different sort of big chase, where they kept losing wickets right through. Shreyas Iyer's 96 was a different sort of innings to Pant's 97. Daredevils were 121 for 6 at one point, with only the lower order left to give Iyer company.

Then, out of the blue, came some of this season's most exhilarating batting, as Iyer and Pat Cummins plundered 52 from three overs. Suddenly, Daredevils only needed 23 off 18 balls.

There would, of course, be some late tension. Cummins holed out when he may not have needed to hit in the air. Iyer fell in the last over, leaving Nos. 9 and 10 seven to get off four balls. Amit Mishra, though, kept his head, pulling off two ice-cool fours off successive balls to haul Delhi over the line with two balls to spare.

Finch, Karthik lift Lions out of early trouble

Green Park provided a flat batting pitch for its first game of the IPL season, and Lions, despite losing their top three inside the first seven overs, kept scoring at a healthy rate. A lot of this was down to the bowling; in this game, Daredevils' bowlers seemed to have caught the contagion of bowling too straight - and often too short - and leaked runs behind square on the leg side.

In all, they would concede 52 runs, and 10 boundaries (out of 26 overall), in that region. Mohammed Shami provided an early instance of this, bowling one ball full and leg-stumpish and another short and leg-stumpish to Ishan Kishan in the fourth over - with fine leg and square leg both inside the circle - giving away six and four.

Still, Lions had to fight from 56 for 3, and they did so via a 92-run stand, in 58 balls, between Aaron Finch and Dinesh Karthik. Both batsmen played some eye-catching shots, the highlights including a straight six by Karthik off Shami and some ruthless pulls from Finch, who finished with 69 off 39.

Run-outs imperil Daredevils chase

Sanju Samson hit two sumptuous fours through the covers before dragging a pull onto his stumps in the second over of the chase. Then Rishabh Pant, having sauntered absentmindedly out of his crease after surviving an lbw appeal from Pradeep Sangwan, was caught out by a direct hit from Suresh Raina at slip.

That left Daredevils 15 for 2. Iyer then put on the first of his two substantial stands, 57 off 34 balls, with Karun Nair. Right from the start, Iyer's placement stood out - he kept finding gaps in the infield, particularly through the off side, and particularly through or behind point. Then Nair, having just hit three successive fours off Dwayne Smith's slow-medium long-hops and reverse-lapped Ravindra Jadeja for another four, miscued a James Faulkner slower ball.

Then came two run-outs, both from direct hits powered by Jadeja's priceless left arm. First, Marlon Samuels was slow responding to Iyer's call for a single after a push towards point. Mistake. Then Corey Anderson wandered out of his crease after bunting Basil Thampi towards backward point. Another mistake. When Carlos Brathwaite fell to a short ball from Dhawal Kulkarni in the 14th over, Daredevils were sinking. They needed 75 from 37 balls at that point, with only four wickets in hand.

Iyer, Cummins blast off

Daredevils didn't have time for a slow-burning comeback. They duly hit four fours in the next over, two each by Iyer and Cummins, all of them hit along the ground, into off-side gaps. Then Iyer drove and flicked three successive fours off Kulkarni. The biggest over, though, was still to come. It would come - as it has more often than he'd like to admit - against Faulkner. Cummins, expecting and getting the slower, length ball first up, clouted him over long-on. Then Iyer lifted Faulkner over long-off before drilling a drive between the bowler and mid-off.To recap Daredevils smashed 17, 14 and 21 runs off the 15th, 16th and 17th overs.

Mishra the finisher

When Cummins picked out long-on in the 19th over, Daredevils needed 14 off 10 balls. When Iyer played all around a Basil Thampi yorker in the final over, they needed 7 off 4. In walked Mishra, a vastly improved long-format batsman, but not one counted among T20's most dangerous lower-order hitters.

Mishra knows the game inside-out, though, and probably guessed that Thampi would bowl a yorker first up. Down the track he went, surprising the bowler into a full-toss, which he flicked nonchalantly past midwicket. Then, with three to get off three balls, he walked across his stumps, with the knowledge that fine leg was stationed rather square. Thampi's slower ball may have surprised some batsmen, but not Mishra. He waited, kept his shape, waited some more, and unfurled a deft little scoop. The fielder chased hard, dived, got his body behind the ball, but couldn't help deflecting it into the rope.

Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ram4fr9677970 on May 11, 2017, 13:33 GMT

    DD gave chance to lot of younger players. they lost few close matches and few other matches due to tactics. like sending Mathews ahead of morris and not using 2nd spinner etc. but DD team is happy bench. Team like RCB not given chances to youngsters and they deserve to be bottom of table. Player like Sarbaz khan side lined last year.

  • Ashoke on May 11, 2017, 12:04 GMT

    DD is surely the team of the tornament. A bit more consistency should have put them in the playoff. Sadly not.

  • Naresh on May 11, 2017, 11:23 GMT

    @BBNN yes Pant does come across as a bit lazy. Reminds me of a Shewag. Pant,Samson and Iyer will be the guys India will look to one day.

  • aniket7304179 on May 11, 2017, 11:17 GMT

    One thing for sure DD has given us young indian talent to groom them and utilise them well in the near future, no matter they are eliminated for this year but players like Samson,Pant & Iyer has been the finds and they are the future stars of indian cricket. Indian batting future is is safe hands for sure.

  • krishnakumar on May 11, 2017, 7:49 GMT

    I think next year onwards IPL will miss Australia England newzealand test playing players as respective boards trying to prevent them play.

  • raj on May 11, 2017, 7:43 GMT

    The real charm of IPL will start now as to which four teams are going to be in Play offs and who will be in the top two slots.

  • krishnakumar on May 11, 2017, 6:08 GMT

    IPL destroy young bowlers like thampi Siraj Ankit Chaudhary etc because batsmen play them cautious and score runs.other bowlers like srinath arvind jayadev undakat took heap of wickets as batsmen play them carefree .in the end bowlers like undakat arvind etc gets selected and we saw how they performed at international level

  • Patrick on May 11, 2017, 5:44 GMT

    Bowlers like Basil Thampi should be fast tracked to the senior team or at the least the 2nd string ones. Cant wait or waste good bowling talents. Since bowlers are all coming with short expiry dates getting some good talents early would be the key and also some good competitive bench strength. Both Bumrah m Thampi should not just focus on limited overs but the longer versions as they would be great for test matches both in India as well as in Eng, SA or Aus..

  • binu on May 11, 2017, 5:35 GMT

    Pant is a good batsman I agree, but he is lazy and not mature.India lost the U19 WC to WI because of the same laziness.See what happened in the final of U19 match.Exactly similar thing happened yesterday.He should learn from his mistakes

  • darkse3265494 on May 11, 2017, 4:45 GMT

    in the previous dd-gl match thampi didn't allow pant to complete his 100 and now he's done the same to iyer.

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