Kane Williamson had yet again resurrected the Hyderabad hopes, in the Qualifier 2 against Delhi, but an ideal finish was not meant to be. In the second innings full of twists and turns, Delhi Capitals held their nerve. Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis and African pacer Kagiso Rabada were at the forefront of choking the Sunrisers towards the end. Albeit the major damage was done by Dhawan and Hetmeyer with their blistering knocks with the bat in the first innings.
The biggest surprise however, came at the toss when Shreyas Iyer decided to bat first on a ground where chasing seemed to come with ease. As it turned out, it was indeed a masterstroke especially given the hollow pockets in the Sunrisers batting lineup and the availability of experienced bowling options with Delhi.
Delhi vs Hyderabad (Qualifier 2): How the drama unfolded
For the first time this season, Marcus Stoinis opened for the Delhi Capitals and was on the money right from the word go. He saw the early swing through before beginning to cut loose. Targeting the mainstay of Hyderabad’s pace attack, Jason Holder, Stoinis ensured that Delhi took the momentum along going into the second phase of their innings. Stoinis was dismissed by the ever-so-reliable Rashid Khan as it was the only scalp the leg-spinner could pick up in his four overs. Meanwhile, Delhi batters took on the other spinner in Shahbaaz Nadeem to make up for a quiet middle patch.
Post Iyer’s dismissal, Dhawan continued the onslaught in company of Shimron Hetmeyer and the duo soon took it to the next level. Dhawan upped the ante post his half century, his sixth of the tournament, whereas Hetmeyer had a pedal on the accelerator from his first ball itself. The duo carried along well and a 200+ total seemed inevitable. Thankfully for Hyderabad though, the death overs specialist Natarajan and Sandeep Sharma finished off the innings well giving only 13 of the last two. Delhi had set Hyderabad a 190 run target.
The reply from Hyderabad can be phased out in three phases. While the middle phase was glorified with some mind-blowing hitting from Williamson and Samad, Hyderabad crumbled on either side of it. Up front, David Warner was dismissed early by Rabada and the prospect partnership between Garg and Pandey was broken by Delhi’s main-man Marcus Stoinis. He took both their wickets in the same over exposing the Hyderabad middle order. Three early wickets meant the match-winning camaraderie of Williamson and Holder from the last match was back on the ground and shouldered hopes for the Orange Army. Williamson went clean and big from time to time with Holder quietly nudging the ball around. The breakthrough came in the 12th over when Axar got the wicket of Holder caught at Deep Mid-Wicket in an attempt to clear the fence. The match at that point seemed all but over for the Sunrisers.
Williamson, who by then was well fit in his groove was joined by Abdul Samad. The J&K player youngster had been talked in high regards by the Hyderabad management but never had much chance to showcase his abilities. He first began with a pull for six over square-leg against Nortje and then followed it up with a couple of well-placed boundaries. His confidence in the middle also helped release some pressure of Williamson who by now had started to see the ball 10 times bigger. With only 61 needed of the last 5, Hyderabad were still in with a chance. Delhi were left with an over each of Rabada and Nortje, meaning they had to bowl three between Ashwin and Stoinis. The two therefore bowled the next three in tandem giving away 31 but with the priced wicket of Williamson.
Stoinis had been an inspiration for the Delhi team with the bat and had continued to spread his magic with the ball. A slower cutter outside off got the better of the Kiwi great opening doors for the African duo to ensure a finish. The match was then sealed in the penultimate over where Rabada took three wickets in space of 4 deliveries. The consequent 17 run win marked Delhi’s maiden entry to an IPL final against Mumbai at Dubai on Tuesday.
What a day for @DelhiCapitals. All these years of heartbreak and now, finally, a place in the final. And a deserving spot for a team that, after a gruelling tournament, finished second at the league stage.
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) November 8, 2020
Almost after a couple of months of intense cricket and perhaps after the closes IPL season ever, the world will finally witness a grand finale. – Mumbai Indians vs Delhi Capitals – arguably the two best teams from this year’s Dream11 IPL 2020.