Delhi Daredevils played host to Kolkata Knight Riders in the 18th match of the season and it turned to be an absolute thriller. Opting to bat first after winning the toss, DD put up a competitive total of 168/7 on the board, courtesy a collective effort from the top 5 batsmen.
KKR got off to a poor start as they lost three wickets for just 21 runs inside three overs. Manish Pandey and Yusuf Pathan then strung a partnership of 110 runs with both batsmen scoring half-centuries.
The match went down to the wire and could have gone either way until the final over. Pandey played a magnificent innings of 69 and kept a steady head to give his side a win by 4 wickets in a nail-biting finish that also took them to the top of the points table.
Here is how the players from both sides performed in the match.
Sanju Samson – 7/10
The right-hander held on to his opener’s slot once more and looked in fine touch. He began with two scintillating boundaries in the first over off Coulter-Nile. The timing and placement were immaculate as he smashed five fours in his innings that included three in Umesh Yadav’s over. He looked good for another big score but his knock was cut short by Umesh Yadav and he ended with a score of 39 off 25.
Sam Billings – 6/10
Sam Billings, the other opener, was playing second fiddle to Samson and concentrated on turning the strike over. He got off to a decent start yet again but couldn’t convert that into a substantial score and departed after scoring 21 off 17. His dismissal was deemed as unlucky as he tried to pull a ball down the leg side but managed to glove it which landed in the hands of the keeper.
Karun Nair – 5/10
Nair has struggled for runs this season and needed to spend some time at the crease. He walked in to bat in the 7th over and had plenty of overs left to get his eye in. He played cautiously but wasn’t timing the ball well. Ones and twos were all that he was getting and he even got a reprieve. But when he needed to up the ante, he was bowled by Coulter-Nile for 21 off 27.
Shreyas Iyer – 6/10
Iyer was in at No. 4 and was up and running straight away and struck four classy boundaries. When he reached 25 off 16 balls, he lost his wicket due to a misjudged second run and fell short of the crease at the striker’s end, courtesy an accurate throw from the deep by de Grandhomme.
Rishabh Pant – 7.5/10
The left-hander has shown great form this year and got into his groove from the outset while batting at No. 5. He started the attack by first smashing Kuldeep Yadav for a six over long-off and then slammed Umesh Yadav for 3 sixes and 2 fours in the next over. He lost his wicket for 38 off 16 balls in the hunt for quick runs in the penultimate over.
Angelo Mathews – 3/10
Playing his first game for DD this season, the Sri Lankan did not have a good start. He was in at number 6 in the 15th over when Pant was going hammer and tongs at the other end. Mathews attempted to go after Sunil Narine and gave him the charge but missed the ball altogether which cannoned into his leg stump and he went back after scoring just one run off 4 balls. With the ball, he gave away 15 runs in 2 overs and couldn’t bag any wickets.
Chris Morris – 6.5/10
The Proteas all-rounder once again batted during the slog overs and played a late cameo once more. He scored 16 off 9 balls that consisted of 3 fours. During KKR’s chase, he bagged the prized scalp of Pathan who threatened to run away with the game and finished with figures of 30/1 in 4 overs.
Pat Cummins – 6/10
The pacer was hit for three fours in the first over but made a stunning return by sending back Uthappa in the same over. Once more, he was hit for three fours in his next over and his figures read 28/1 after 2 overs. But he recovered well and bowled the crucial 16th and 18th overs and gave away just 6 runs in each and sent Suryakumar back in the process.
Mohammed Shami – 4.5/10
The Indian fast bowler played his first game of the season after recovering from injury but it didn’t turn out to be a happy comeback for him. He was hit for 28 runs in 3 overs and failed to pick up a wicket. With one over to go in the innings, Zaheer opted to go for Mishra instead of him despite having his one over in hand.
Amit Mishra – 5/10
The leg-spinner had gone for 17 runs in his first over but the skipper showed faith in him and asked him to bowl the last over with 9 runs in the bag. He began superbly with two massive turners that beat Woakes comprehensively. He even got his wicket off the second ball.
In the last over, Pandey found the strike, and strangely, Mishra decided to go for the seam up delivery that was hit back over his head for a six. Then, a couple of the next ball took KKR past the line and Mishra was left stranded.
Zaheer Khan – 7/10
The veteran of Indian cricket provided his team a superb start when he dismissed de Grandhomme in the first over and then got his counterpart Gambhir too in the next over. He finished with figures of 28/2 in 4 overs.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Gautam Gambhir – 5/10
The skipper has been in a fine touch in this edition of IPL and to chase the target of 169, the onus was on him to build a platform early. In the second over bowled by Pat Cummins, he creamed the bowler for two boundaries. But two quick wickets falling at the other end put pressure on him and in a bid to break the shackles, he lost his wicket to Zaheer for 14 off 12 balls.
Colin de Grandhomme – 3/10
KKR experimented once more for the opener’s slot and sent the Kiwi all-rounder at the top. The move didn’t work this time as he was dismissed by Zaheer Khan off the 5th ball of the innings for just one run. With the ball too, he gave away 12 runs in the solitary over he got to bowl. The only bright moment for him was when he inflicted the run out of Iyer in the first innings.
Robin Uthappa – 3/10
The right-hander batted once more at No. 3 after a great innings in the last match. He got off the mark in style by pulling a short ball to the square leg boundary but fell to Cummins the very next ball while attempting a booming drive to an away swinger but an outside edge gave the keeper an opportunity which he didn’t let go.
Manish Pandey – 9/10
Pandey was in at No. 4 when KKR were in a spot of bother, but he played a magnificent innings and continued his merry run this season. First, he had a wonderful partnership with Pathan and after the dismissal of the Baroda batsman, Pandey took it upon himself to win the game for his side. He took them ever so closer and when 8 runs were needed off the last 3 balls, he smashed a six and then took a couple next ball to see his team through. His composed innings finished unbeaten with 69 off 49 with 4 fours and 3 sixes.
Yusuf Pathan – 8/10
The hard-hitting batsman was due a big one this season and he finally delivered with a fine knock of 59 off 39 balls. He was at the crease when KKR were tottering at 21/3 in the 3rd over. He understood his responsibility and mixed caution with aggression. He shared a partnership of 110 runs for the 4th wicket with Pandey. He perished to a short ball from Chris Morris in the 15th over but not before he brought his side back into the game.
Suryakumar Yadav – 4/10
After Pathan’s dismissal in the 15th over, KKR still needed 39 off 31 balls. Pandey was batting beautifully at one end and Yadav’s job was to provide him the strike. After batting for 8 balls, he went for the glory shot over the mid-off fielder but failed to clear him and gave an easy catch to Zaheer. He managed to score just 7 runs off 9 balls and left the crease when still a few runs were to be chased.
Sunil Narine – 7.5/10
Narine didn’t open the innings unlike his previous innings and his primary job was with the ball in hand. He bowled a terrific spell of 4 overs in which he gave away just 20 runs. He was difficult to score runs off as usual and accounted for the wicket of Mathews in his last over.
Chris Woakes – 6/10
The English pacer had a mixed day in the field. He bagged the wicket of Morris and ended with figures of 31/1. He came to bat very late in the innings and found himself on strike in the last over when 9 runs were required. The order of the day would have been to give the strike to Pandey but he attempted two heaves off Mishra but failed to connect either of them and was stumped off the second one and made the long walk back after scoring 3 off 5 balls.
Kuldeep Yadav – 4/10
The spinner didn’t have a great day with the ball as he went for 29 runs in 3 overs. Whenever he was in the attack, the DD batsmen went after him. His first over went for 9, the second one for 11 and the last one for 9 runs. Going by his recent form, it was a fairly below par performance from Kuldeep.
Nathan Coulter-Nile – 8.5/10
The Australian pacer played his first game of the season and immediately made a huge impact. He had figures of 22/3 in 4 overs and accounted for the crucial wickets of Billings, Nair and Pant.
Umesh Yadav – 3/10
The pacer had an off day and was taken for runs by the DD batters. In his very first over, Billings and Samson collected 17 runs that included 4 boundaries. He made a good comeback in the next over and removed Samson and backed it up with a 6 run over. But Pant went absolutely berserk in his last over and hit him for 26 runs that dented his figures to 53/1.