Hyderabad: Delhi Capitals continued their impressive form in the ongoing IPL recording their sixth win on Wednesday. Their 13-run victory over Rajasthan Royals also propelled them to the top of the points table.
Defending 161 runs, Capitals restricted Royals to 148/8 on the back of a good bowling performance. Speaking after the victory, Shikhar Dhawan, who scored his second half-century in successive matches, heaped praises on their bowling unit for delivering consistently. “(Anrich) Nortje and (Kagiso) Rabada are great bowlers, Rabada is a legend, and when they both bowl as a partnership, it is lethal. They have been taking early wickets and when we bring them back during the death overs or the middle overs, we know they will do the job. We are fortunate to have this class of bowling. The spinners have also been doing their job. The way (Ravichandran) Ashwin and Axar Patel have been performing was great. Everyone is doing well and that is a sign of a good team,” he said after the match.
He also lauded debutant pacer Tushar Deshpande who made his debut and picked up the crucial wicket of Ben Stokes along with bowling the final over to defend 21 runs. “Tushar Despande was amazing, especially under such pressure, we got him in and he responded nicely. He got the crucial wicket of Stokes, he kept his cool. Even in the last over, he was clear in his plans, really happy to see him do so well and he backed himself,” Dhawan said.
Dhawan, during his half-century knock, became the fourth Indian to complete 7,500 runs in T20s. Speaking about his knock, he said, “My mindset was to play positive cricket. I did not play Archer much as I was in the other end. We knew wickets were getting slower so it was important to score runs in the first six overs, we lost two wickets early but still we kept the courage and we kept on going.”
Meanwhile, Royals’ bowling coach Sairaj Bahatule revealed that losing Ben Stokes and Riyan Parag turned the game in Capitals’ favour. ” I think partnerships were pretty important, the start we got through Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes, we did not need to lose these many wickets and especially that run out of Riyan Parag. The most important part was the wicket of Stokes and the run-out (of Parag) was very crucial, we could have probably avoided that and if Sanju stayed at the wicket, we could have taken the game a bit deeper and got these runs,” he said.
He also defended their struggling skipper Steve Smith who came a cropper after first two games. “I think Smith is a fantastic captain for us, he is a great leader, he had a good start in the tournament, he is a guy who works on his game, I am sure he will make the coming games count and score his runs,” he concluded.
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