Delhi Capitals 175 for 3 (Shaw 64, Pant 37*, Dhawan 35, Chawla 2-33) beat Chennai Super Kings 131 for 7 (du Plessis 43, Rabada 3-26, Nortje 2-21) by 44 runs
Three nights ago, they had settled for protecting their net run rate after falling too far behind the asking rate in a chase of 217 against the Rajasthan Royals. Today the Chennai Super Kings were never in the reckoning in a chase of 176.
They were up against the Delhi Capitals, who possess one of the better bowling attacks in the competition, but hobbling to 47 for 3 at the 10-over mark said far more about the inadequacies in the Super Kings’ batting. Ambati Rayudu, their match-winner in their season-opener against the Mumbai Indians, was out with a hamstring injury, but it will still concern the Super Kings that they weren’t able to put together a line-up that could chase a target that, while testing, needed them to score less than nine an over.
Axar Patel bowled tight lines in a rare spell – for this season at least – of spin with the new ball, and took out the Super Kings’ one real source of top-order muscle, Shane Watson. Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje also proved difficult to get away, finding a bit of early movement before shifting to the hard lengths. But without Rayudu – and without Suresh Raina – and with the team management not promoting Sam Curran up the order to break up a monotonously right-handed top six, there was little power or invention in the Super Kings line-up to challenge the Capitals’ bowlers.
A better batting line-up could have put more pressure on the Capitals bowling, and possibly shown up a somewhat conservative batting performance too. After a half-century from Prithvi Shaw had powered them to 88 for no loss at the 10-over mark, the Capitals never really found their top gear, and failed to clear 180 despite losing only three wickets.
More to follow…
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