Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant was chuffed to have witnessed his team finally winning two consecutive matches in IPL 2022 which have improved their playoffs chances. They defeated Punjab Kings by 17 runs and thus climbed up to the fourth spot in the standings.
Mitchell Marsh was the star performer with the bat, hitting a second consecutive fifty while Shardul Thakur took four wickets. The spin duo of Axar Patel and Kuldeep Yadav tied down the PBKS batters in the middle overs accounting for two wickets each.
Strangely, Kuldeep was the only frontline bowler from DC who didn’t complete his full quota of four overs despite going for just 14 runs in three overs. When asked during a post-match chat why it was so, Pant explained, “We saved him (Kuldeep) for back half, then the dew came in so we didn’t want to give a massive over for someone.”
After losing a wicket off the very first delivery, DC counterattacked to finish the Powerplay at 59/2 before slowing down. They eventually finished at 159/7 in 20 overs.
When asked what was the plan behind the approach, Pant said, “The only process was to take it deep, with spinners getting help and we saw the same pattern happen with the other team as well.”
PBKS managed 142/9 in their 20 overs despite a solid start from their openers before DC hit back with quick blows.
DC have now won seven of their 13 matches and a win in the final match should ensure a playoffs berth. “Throughout the tournament we have been losing one, and winning one game. That’s something we wanted to change as a team and we got it,” Pant said.
DC now have a break of five days and will next face Mumbai Indians on Saturday at the Wankhede Stadium. PBKS have a six-day off before returning to action against Sunrisers Hyderabad.