Prithvi Shaw’s 18-ball 50 guided Delhi Capitals to a seven-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Thursday.
The fastest fifty of the season, packed with classical cricketing shots, was straight out of a coaching manual.
Electing to bowl, DC restricted KKR to 154/6. During the chase, Shaw hit top gear in the first over by smashing 25 runs off Shivam Mavi. The fast bowler started with a wide and ended up conceding six fours. Shaw unlocked his catalogue to demonstrate the top shots — the loft over the bowler’s head, flick over deep mid-wicket followed by two exquisite cover drives.
Shikhar Dhawan (46 off 47) rotated the strike and encouraged the youngster to attack the bowlers.
KKR may have erred in decision-making by not bowling Pat Cummins (3/24) upfront. The Australian maintained an economy of six while his colleagues went over eight. Eventually, he was the only bowler to dismiss the three Delhi batsmen – Dhawan, Shaw (82) and Rishabh Pant (16).
Dhawan was trapped in front of his stumps while Rana caught Shaw at backward point. Pant was caught by Mavi at long-on.
Marcus Stoinis (6 not out) finished it off with 21 balls to spare.
Lalit Yadav removed KKR captain Eoin Morgan and Sunil Narine in one over. – BCCI/IPL
Earlier, KKR had a steady start in the Powerplay (45/1) before Lalit Yadav’s twin strike choked the runs. The opening pair of Shubman Gill (43) and Nitish Rana (15) added only 25.
Rana was the first one to fall after hitting a six off a switch-hit. The left-hander charged down the track a little too early and missed the straighter one from Axar Patel that pitched outside off; Rishabh Pant took the bails off in a flash.
Gill registered his best score of the season but the strike-rate of 113.16 did not help matters. However, the slog sweep six over the deep mid-wicket off Axar remains the shot of the day.
Speedster Avesh Khan cut short Rahul Tripathi’s (19) stay in the wicket but his partnership of 44 off 35 with Gill rescued KKR from rough waters.
Then, right-arm off-break bowler Yadav removed southpaws Eoin Morgan and Sunil Narine in the 11th over to turn the tide. Both the batters registered their second duck of the season.
Yadav’s 2/13 and Axar’s 2/32 kept DC in the hunt despite the Russell hustle in the end. The big man switched on the repair mode and smashed four sixes and two fours to remain unbeaten on 45 off 27.