In a display of complete superiority, Kings XI Punjab secured a 10 wicket victory over Delhi Daredevils with 73 balls to spare. After putting Delhi in to bat, an exceptional performance by Punjab, particularly Sandeep Sharma (4/20) and Varun Aaron (2/3), rounded up the visitors for just 67 runs.
With the IPL jamboree moving to Mohali, both the teams decided to give a new look to their teams. In the absence of Zaheer Khan, Karun Nair came out for toss and brought Sam Billings, Mohammed Shami, and Shahbaz Nadeem back in place of Pat Cummins, Zaheer Khan, and Ankit Bawne. For Kings XI Punjab, Eoin Morgan, Ishant Sharma, Anureet Singh, and KC Cariappa paved way for Hashim Amla, T Natarajan, Sandeep Sharma, and Varun Aaron. Punjab won the toss and decided to field first.
Sandeep Sharma destroys Delhi
Making a return, Sandeep Sharma bowled one of the finest opening spells in the tournament, dismissing Sam Billings for a duck. The man in form, Sanju Samson looked half the player he was, and despite scoring a boundary after a scratchy start, gave a leading edge to Mohit Sharma at mid-off. While Shreyas Iyer and Karun Nair were supposed to bail the team out of the precarious situation, it got even worse as both threw their wickets away. After the pacers ran riot, Delhi would have hoped to get some respite through the introduction of spin, but that was to no avail as Rishabh Pant played around a Glenn Maxwell delivery and was caught plumb in front of the stumps. At the end of 10 overs, Delhi found themselves in a horrendous position with the scoreboard reading 37/6.
Finding themselves in a mess, Delhi looked towards Anderson to get them to a defendable score and the Kiwi along with Kagiso Rabada put up a brave fight scoring 22 runs over the next four overs. The 26-run stand, the best of the Delhi innings, came crashing down, just like Anderson’s stumps when an inside edge off a Varun Aaron delivery sent him packing. The rest of the tail could only contribute another eight runs as the entire Delhi team were accounted for just 67.
Guptill’s maiden fifty makes little work of Delhi target
Punjab signalled their intent early as Martin Guptill smashed Mohammed Shami for two boundaries in the first over and Hashim Amla followed it up with a boundary of his own off Rabada. Guptill looked in great touch as he hit South African duo, Chris Morris and Rabada, for 11 runs each to bring the required run rate below 2 an over. Punjab finished off the powerplay with the scoreboard reading 50. Nair then decided to bring in spin to get a consolation wicket, but Mishra’s first delivery was dispatched for a huge six over mid wicket and in the next over Shahbaz Nadeem suffered the same fate. However, on the fifth delivery of the eighth over, a Guptill single not only gave him his maiden IPL fifty but his team a 10 wicket victory with an astonishing 73 balls to spare.
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