21 games have passed in the 10th season of the IPL, and the table has begun to take shape. The defending champions, Sunrisers Hyderabad, returned near the top of the table with a 15-run win over Delhi Daredevils.
After winning the toss and batting first, David Warner’s men put in an imposing target of 192 for the opponents to chase down. In response, Delhi started well, but couldn’t get over the line due to some tight bowling from Hyderabad in the end.
Without further ado, here are 5 moments from this match that don't fade away, quite like the Axe signature range of body perfumes:
#1 Williamson’s willow’s magic
It was about time that the IPL was bestowed by some Kiwi magic and Kane Williamson provided us with just that with a whimsical innings of 89 runs in 51 balls. In the first ever game of the IPL, it was a New Zealander who set the stage ablaze with an immaculate 158-run innings for the Kolkata Knight Riders.
However, after Brendan McCullum, if there is any other Kiwi player who has made the IPL his own, it is Kane Williamson. The supremely talented batsman has shown his array of batting skills over the years for his nation and displayed the same potency with the bat today.
With 5 sixes and 6 boundaries, the New Zealand captain built the innings for the Sunrisers along with an inspired Shikhar Dhawan, making it a moment that won’t fade away.
#2 Morris’ magnificence
Chris Morris is perhaps one of the most underrated players in the cricket fraternity. Seriously, what can this man not do? He comes in to bat deep in the order and wreaks havoc against the poor bowlers that have the misfortune of facing him.
And then there is the bowler Chris Morris, whose unnatural bounce from his tall height completely distorts the batsmen’s minds. Oh, and he bowls at express pace.
In a game where the Delhi bowlers got hammered all around the park, Chris Morris came up with a beauty of a spell. In his 4 overs, he took 4 wickets while only giving away 26 runs, which in turn restricted the hosts to below the dreaded 200-mark.
#3 Yuvraj Singh’s crucial over
There are phases in a game when it seems like a team is running away with a game. In those times, it is a moment of freak magic that turns the tide of the game. The term ‘turning the game on its head’ is purely made for instances such as Yuvraj’s only over of the game.
Delhi Daredevils were going smoothly at 84/1 after 9.1 overs. Sanju Samson struck the ball at midwicket and pushed early for 2 runs. The intent was clear: He was going to get 2 runs no matter what. Ultimately, that is what led to Karun Nair’s demise as Vijay Shankar’s brilliant effort meant that the Test triple centurion fell short of his ground.
Then came the golden boy, Rishabh Pant. But in the very first ball that he faced, he went gung-ho and had to pay for it as David Warner took an easy catch to dismiss him for a golden duck. This swung the momentum in favour of the defending champions and left the visitors playing catch up.
#4 Shreyas Iyer’s rally
Delhi Daredevils bat quite deep and they have a plethora of Indian talents in their squad. And after Pant’s dismissal came promising youngster, Shreyas Iyer.
Iyer can be labeled as someone who hasn’t fully achieved his potential as his play is still littered with inconsistency. However, in this game, we saw that version of Iyer which had many Indian fans hoping that the talent pool of the nation has the future secured.
He might not have been able to win his team the game, but his 50 off just 31 balls is a promising sign of things to come and was one of those moments in the match which will be appreciated by his team-mates and coaches.
#5 Dravid’s decision making
Rahul Dravid is a legend in the proper sense of the word. As a Test player, many argue that he was India’s greatest ever, and this is despite the fact that Sachin Tendulkar played for the same team.
After his retirement, he has also been making a name as a coach, taking the Indian U19 team to glory in the Asia Cup in 2016 while reaching the finals of the U19 World Cup with his talented crop. However, with Delhi tonight, he made a blunder, one that he has made throughout this season: He held back Chris Morris till way too late and that, in turn, cost Delhi the match.
Morris is a menace or the bowlers. There are only a few players who strike the ball with as much strength as Morris. Hence, sending the South African at number 7 in a game that required brisk hitting was a mistake—and Delhi had to pay for it.