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Feature

Talking Points: Why did Rashid bowl so late?

Despite the pitch assisting spin, the legspinner came on only in the tenth over of Daredevils' innings

Dustin Silgardo
10-May-2018
Why was Rashid Khan's entry delayed?
On a slow pitch that was offering some grip, Sunrisers Hyderabad captain Kane Williamson may have thought about bringing on legspinner Rashid Khan early, especially after Delhi Daredevils lost two early wickets to spin. But Rashid has made it clear that he prefers bowling to right-handers than left-handers, and the statistics tell you why. He's been going at nearly 10 an over against left-handers, compared to just over six an over to right-handers. So, with Rishabh Pant at the crease, and the rest of the Daredevils line-up packed with right-handers, Rashid was held back till the 10th over. The Sunrisers fast bowlers were successful with their ploy of bowling wide slower balls to Pant in the first game between these sides, and were charged with doing the same again.
Harshal Patel gets promoted
After the Powerplay, it seemed like Daredevils would target a score of between 140 and 160 on the slow surface. But once they lost their third wicket, they chose to send in allrounder Harshal Patel as a pinch-hitter. Daredevils were guided, perhaps, as much by the form of their specialist batsmen as by Harshal's abilities. Maxwell has struggled and has been shifting up and down the order. He's been dismissed four times by spinners, so Daredevils may have wanted to use him as a specialist finisher. Vijay Shankar was the other option, but he had really struggled against spinners, managing just 25 runs off the 29 balls he'd faced. In contrast, Shankar had struck at 200-plus against pace. So, the plan was to keep Shankar and Maxwell for the death and hope Harshal could get some quick runs in the middle overs. He made 24 off 17 balls.
More to follow

Dustin Silgardo is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo