The 34th match of the Tata IPL 2022 between Rajasthan Royals and Delhi Capitals ( hit by COVID scare) at Wankhede stadium in Mumbai was a high scoring encounter. It was the Royals who emerged winners by 15 runs .
Delhi Skipper Rishabh Pant won the toss and fielded first. And to his agony saw his bowlers hit all around the ground by the rampaging Royals batsmen. In imperious form this season the orange cap holder Jos Buttler began slowly then put his foot his foot on the accelerator and hence was unstoppable. As he hit some towering sixes and fours with absolute ease and disdain to the shell shocked Delhi bowlers . The result was Buttler’s third superb ton . An astonishing innings of 116 made off 65 balls with nine fours and nine sixes. It was sensational stuff.
Giving him great support was Devdutt Padikkal who made a mush awaited 54 off 35 balls with seven fours and two sixes . Buttler and Padikkal put on 155 for the first wicket in 15.1 overs. Royals Skipper Sanju Samson did not let go the aggression and hit a quick unbeaten 19 ball 46 with five fours and three sixes. Royals powered to an impressive 222/ 2 in their 20 overs.
Delhi Skipper Rishabh Pant could only watch as Royals batsmen tore apart the bowling leaving his head shaking in frustration . Khaleel Ahmed 1/ 47 ( 4 overs) , Shardul Thakur 0/ 29 (3 overs), Lalit Yadav 0/ 41 ( 4 overs) , Mustafizur Rahman 1/ 43 ( 4 overs), Kuldeep Yadav 0/ 40 ( 3 overs) , Axar Patel 0/ 21 ( 2 overs) . Making matter worse was the absence of head coach Ricky Pointing from the dug out as a person close to family tested covid positive, Ponting will be in isolation for five days .
Chasing a mammoth totals , Delhi need to get cracking from the start as the run rate required was high. Prithvi Shaw scored a 27 ball 37 . David Warned 14 ball 28. Sarfaraz Khan ( 1). Skipper Rishabh Pant 24 ball 44 . Lalit Yadav a 24 ball 37. The big innings however never came . It seemed the Royals would win comfortably. But instead the match tie went right down to the wire — 36 runs need off the last six balls. Rovman Powell gave Delhi hope with his power hits a 15 ball 36 with five sixes.
Following three sixes off the first three balls by Delhi Capital’s Rovman Powell in the final over by Obed McCoy.
Rajasthan held off for a 15 run win as the free hitting Powell lost his mojo in the final three deliveries and in a cruel, almost ironic way, was dismissed off the last ball of the innings for an anti-climactic finish.
The last over had its drama , a controversial decision by the umpires for what Skipper Rishabh Pant and the DC dugout felt was a genuine no ball call sparked off a series of events with Delhi coach staff Pravin Amre rushing to the middle . Pant even asking batsmen to come off . This was criticized fair and square by the former England captain Kevin Pietersen. Meanwhile, World Cup winner Shane Watson, who in DC support staff, also rushed to Pant and tried and pacified the matter.
For Royals bowling figures read : Trent Boult 0/ 47 ( 4 overs) , Prasidh Krishna 3/22 ( 4 overs) including wicket maiden 19th over. Obed McCoy 1/ 52 ( 3 overs) , Ravichandran Ashwin 2/ 32( 4 overs) , Yuzvendra Chahal 1/ 28 ( 4 overs) , 0/22 ( 1 over)