Delhi Capitals faced many a crests and troughs against Kolkata Knight Riders with a middle-order collapse, skipper Prithvi Shaw out for a duck, it was Kuldeep Yadav’s four-wicket haul and Mustafizur Rahaman’s brilliant bowling which finally led them to a comfortable four-wicket victory.
Chasing an easy target of 147, DC were 84 for five and 113 for six at various stages of the innings before Rovman Powell (33 not out ) once again displayed his big-hitting prowess to get DC past the target with an over to spare. The hero of the win was certainly Kuldeep Yadav, with a game-changing 4 for 14 when KKR batted.
While DC with 10 points are placed sixth, KKR remained at third from the bottom, and the chopping and changing in the side is a testimony that all is not well in the Shah Rukh Khan-owned franchise’s camp.
Whether big bosses, coaching staff and captain Shreyas Iyer are all on same page is a million dollar question at the moment as they suffered a fifth straight defeat.
Defending a total of 146 wasn’t easy but Umesh Yadav (3/24) did try his best as he started brilliantly with a diving return catch off the very first delivery of the DC innings to send Prithvi Shaw (0) back.
David Warner (42 off 26 balls) was in fine touch, adding 65 for the third wicket with Lalit Yadav (22 off 22 balls), as DC cruised along at 82 for two.
But it soon became 84 for five as both the set batters were removed in quick succession and skipper Rishabh Pant (2) played a rank bad shot to bring KKR back in the game.
Axar Patel’s (24 off 17 balls) needless run-out after being well-set made it 113 for six, and more importantly, 34 to get in five overs.
KKR captain Shreyas Iyer had to get one over done from his non-regular bowler and Powell took advantage of that, dispatching Venkatesh Iyer for a six off the very first ball. The 17th over yielded 18 runs and it changed the fortunes for Delhi.
A host of changes in the playing XI did seem to have affected the balance of KKR as their innings lacked momentum, save Shreyas Iyer (42 off 37 balls) and Rana (57 off 34 balls), who tried to get a move on.
Kuldeep, who is in the middle of a brilliant season, finished with 4 for 14 which included the wickets of Shreyas and the dangerous Andre Russell. He now has 17 wickets and one short of Yuzvendra Chahal’s 18 scalps.
If Kuldeep wreaked havoc in the middle overs, it was Mustafizur Rahaman (3/18 in 4 overs), who was brilliant giving away only two runs and picking three wickets in the last over.