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IPL 2022: Capitals must hit top gear to give Royals a run for their money

It's the lack of finishing power that has hampered Delhi Capitals progress, writes Ayaz Memon



Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant has yet to score a half-century this season. (BCC)
Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant has yet to score a half-century this season. (BCC)

By Ayaz Memon

Published: Wed 11 May 2022, 12:13 AM

Delhi Capitals’ abject surrender against Chennai Super Kings in their previous match has raised serious question marks over Rishabh Pant’s men.

Are the Capitals running run out of steam in the most critical phase of the league when teams aspire to hit peak form?

The bowlers allowed CSK batsmen to post a mammoth 208. Though a fair number of 200-plus totals have been chased down this season, this generally happens if one, or a couple of batsmen from the top order play significant knocks at a healthy strike rate.

DC have the firepower at the top. But KS Bharat fell at 16, David Warner at 36, Mitch Marsh at 72, and when captain Rishabh Pant was dismissed at 81, the fate of the match was more or less sealed. Delhi went on to lose by 91 runs which not only cost them two points but also pulled down their Net Run Rate.

True, DC were handicapped by the absence of dynamic opener Prithvi Shaw who was unwell and didn’t play. To compound the matter, a quirky umpiring decision went against Warner who had been in destructive form.

With a fine blend of youth and experience, Delhi’s approach is built on bravado and they have provided some of the most exciting cricket in the past three seasons, including the current one.

But it’s the lack of finishing power that has hampered their progress.

Their rivals tonight, Rajasthan Royals (14 points), have a four-point advantage over DC (10) which allows them some buffer, though with the race for places in the playoffs getting tight, no team can afford to relax.

RR’s top-order has been one of the high points of this IPL. Jos Buttler has been dazzling and destructive, with three centuries already to his credit. Sanju Samson is not too far behind.

RR will miss flamboyant finisher Shimron Hetmyer. He has returned to the Caribbean on paternity leave to be with his wife who is slated to deliver their child.

Fortunately for RR, Yashasvi Jaiswal, has returned with a blazing half-century in the previous match.

Both teams are packed with exciting batting and bowling line-ups.

But for Delhi to give the Royals a run for their money, they need to find their top gear tonight.


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