The Delhi franchise began their IPL journey as Delhi Capitals on a successful note after they defeated the Mumbai Indians by 37 runs at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday night.
Given the opportunity to set a target, the Delhi Capitals were powered to 213-6 by a scintillating innings from Rishabh Pant. The wicketkeeper-batsman smashed seven boundaries and as many sixes in his 27-ball 78.
The Mumbai Indians got off to a brisk start before they lost wickets in clusters and lost their way. From 33 for no loss, MI slipped to 45-3 before the powerplay period had elapsed. The fourth wicket pair of Yuvraj Singh and Kieron Pollard steadied the innings, but then came another collapse – this time MI lost two wickets without adding a run. Yuvraj Singh and Krunal Pandya (32 from 15 balls) kept MI in the hunt with a 39-run partnership for the sixth wicket; yet again they lost two wickets in a short span, and their chances began to slip away.
Yuvraj Singh celebrated his debut for the Mumbai Indians by scoring 53; the left-hander struck the ball cleanly on several occasions, collecting five boundaries and three sixes. He brought up his half-century – his first in the IPL since May 2017 – off 33 balls, but perished two balls later – a crisply timed flicked shot finding the fielder at midwicket.
The innings was declared completed after Mitchell McClenaghan was stumped off the bowling of Rahul Tewatia; JaspritBumrah, who suffered a shoulder injury at the end of the first innings, did not bat. MI finished with 176 runs on the board.
Standout batting performance
Rishabh Pant played the kind of innings he has established a reputation for; the Delhi Capitals wicket-keeper thoroughly entertained – and stunned the spectators at the Wankhede Stadium – with audacious stroke play. During his 27-ball innings of 78, he peppered the squareleg and midwicket areas – hitting all his seven sixes in those two areas; he hit flat sixes, one-handed sixes, and even brought out the helicopter on one occasion. Pant didn’t spare MI’s best bowler too; he hit JaspritBumrah for two sixes and a boundary, scoring 18 runs of 7 balls.
Notable Support Act – Batting
Shikhar Dhawan played the role he was expected to play; the left-hander dropped anchor at one end and ensured there was one set batsman in the middle until the final quarter of the innings. He scored 43 from 36 balls and hit four boundaries and a six. It was his 83-run association with Colin Ingram that gave the Delhi Capitals innings momentum. Ingram took a liking for the Pandya brothers, scoring 33 of his 47 runs against them. Both batsmen were fluent through the off-side; Dhawan scored 84% of his runs through the off-side – collecting a significant portion of them through the thirdman region, while Ingram scored nearly a third of his runs on the off-side.
Standout bowling performance
Ishant Sharma pushed the Mumbai Indians on the backfoot very early in the run-chase when he dismissed Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock in the first six overs. In his second over of the match, he had Rohit top-edging a slower delivery and caught at fine-leg. In his next over, he set a short delivery trap and lured de Kock into it.
Mitchell McClenaghan was the most successful bowler for the Mumbai Indians. The Kiwi left-arm pacer struck in his first, second and fourth overs, eventually finishing with figures of 3 for 40. He lured Prithvi Shaw into a drive and had him caught behind, had Shreyas Iyer caught at cover – a wicket for which the bulk of the credit should go to fielder Kieron Pollard, and finally had Keemo Paul top-edging one to the wicket-keeper.
Notable Support Act – Bowling
Kagiso Rabada was outstanding with the ball on Sunday night; the South African bowled quick – his average speed was 140.3 kph and his quickest delivery was clocked at 151 kph – and he was extremely difficult to get away. He conceded just one boundary in his four-over spell, and finished with figures of 2-23 – which included the wickets of Yuvraj Singh and Ben Cutting.
Stat of the Match:
Rishabh Pant took only 18 balls to score his half-century – it would be the fastest half-century scored against the Mumbai Indians in the IPL.
The Mumbai Indians have now lost every one of their season-opening fixtures since IPL 2013.
Rahul Tewatia took 4 catches in the field, equalling the record for the most catches taken by a fielder in an IPL inning; Sachin Tendulkar, David Warner and Jacques Kallis had done it previously.
Delhi Capitals: 213-6 (Rishabh Pant 78*, Colin Ingram 47, Shikhar Dhawan 43, Mitchell McClenaghan 3-40)beat Mumbai Indians: 176 in 19.2 overs (Yuvraj Singh , Krunal Pandya 32, Ishant Sharma 2-34, Kagiso Rabada 2-23)by 37 runs.
Man of the Match:
Rishabh Pant, for his unbeaten 78 off 27 balls