History repeated itself on Wednesday (May 8) in Visakhapatnam when Paul belted Khaleel for a boundary on the penultimate delivery of the 2019 IPL Eliminator to lead Delhi Capitals to a nail-biting two-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad.
However, it was Prithvi Shaw (38 off 56) and Rishabh Pant's (21-ball 49) sparkling knocks that set up the 163-run chase for Delhi and helped them to win their first knockout game in the history of the tournament.
Delhi will now play Chennai Super Kings in the second qualifier at the same venue on Friday. The winner of this encounter will face Mumbai Indians for the 2019 title in Hyderabad on Sunday.
Asked to bat, Wriddhiman Saha (8) fell to Ishant Sharma (2 for 34) early in the innings but Guptill played some blistering shots inside six overs to help Hyderabad get past the 50-run mark in the powerplay for the 12th time this season. The surface looked solid for batting when Trent Boult and Ishant were bowling and Guptill made the most of it.
The right-handed opener from New Zealand smashed four maximums in his 19-ball 36 before getting caught at deep mid-wicket off the bowling of Amit Mishra (1 for 16). The leg-spinner along with Axar Patel and Keemo Paul tied down Hyderabad's middle order and didn't allow them to dictate terms.
Manish Pandey (36-ball 30) and Kane Williamson (27-ball 28) added 34 runs for the third wicket but failed to bring any momentum in the innings. Hyderabad could only manage 39 runs in next eight overs after the powerplay and that led to Pandey and Williamson's downfall. While Pandey fell to Paul, Williamson was undone by a superb yorker from Ishant.
Hyderabad were in a desperate need of some quick runs and they got that from Vijay (11-ball 25) and Nabi (13-ball 20). The two kept hitting boundaries and helped Hyderabad collect 58 runs in the final five overs.
In response, Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan (16-ball 17) added 66 runs in 7.3 overs to get Hyderabad off to a fantastic start. However, it was the 19-year-old who did most of the scoring. Shaw, who has struggled this season except for one innings, slammed Khaleel Ahmed for three fours in one over to bring some early momentum in his innings.
The right-hander then smashed Bhuvneshwar Kumar all around the park and brought up his fifty in 31 deliveries. Dhawan was stumped off Deepak Hooda's bowling while playing a needless heave and then Khaleel removed Shreyas Iyer (8) and Shaw in the same over to reduce Delhi to 87 for 3 and bring Hyderabad back in the game.
Needing 76 in the final nine overs, Colin Munro (14) played a couple of big shots before getting outfoxed by Rashid Khan. The legspinner then removed Axar in the same over to finish with the figures of 2 for 15 and brought the equation down to 52 off 30.
The entire burden then fell on the young but capable shoulders of Rishabh Pant. The wicketkeeper-batsman smoked Nabi for two sixes to open up his shoulders but found no support from Sherfane Rutherford at the start. The West Indian finally broke the shackles by lifting Bhuvneshwar for a six down the ground.
However, Pant completely changed the game by thumping Basil Thampi for 4, 6, 4 and 6 in the 18th over to leave 12 runs to get in as many deliveries. He then tonked Bhuvneshwar for a maximum but then mistimed one to the long-off fielder to walk back to the pavilion with still five runs needed. Paul and Mishra played the first couple of deliveries smartly before the latter was given out for obstructing the field in the fourth delivery.
With two needed off two deliveries, Paul hammered Khaleel's back of a length delivery towards deep mid-wicket to get the job done for Delhi.
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First Published: May 8, 2019, 11:43 PM IST