This is the first of the 2021 IPL Qualifier 1 qualifiers between the Delhi Capitals and the Chennai Super Kings in Dubai. The Capitals need to start as favorites, not only because they have dominated the standings after winning ten of their 14 games, but also because the Super Kings come into this game after three straight losses. But hey, the story. The Super Kings know how to win big games, and that should make it a good competition.
You can access live coverage of this match in English as well as Hindi.
And if you’re in the US, you can watch the game live on ESPN + in English and Hindi.
A superb final finished
A mix of Yorkers and Wide Yorkers, all more or less on target, and Shardul Thakur concedes only eight points on the 20th. And four of those descents took off from a lower edge at the thin leg limit.
Pant scrambles final two balls to finish on 51 * on 35 balls, and the Capitals end with 172 for 5. That’s not a bad total in a playoff game, although there were a few quiet overs. almost out of necessity after Prithvi’s firing of Shaw, due to the Capitals’ lack of batting depth. Will it come back to hurt them? We will see soon.
Including the one who edged out four in the last game, the Capitals scored a total of 41 points on 31 balls when they were out of control. This gave them a NIC strike rate of 132.25, which remains the best of the season for any team in innings.
Bravo ends Hetmyer’s awesome blow
A short ball that crosses the left and climbs steeply. It’s a tough ball to control when shooting, but Hetmyer had hit a similar ball for a formidable flat four beat between the deep midwicket and long ago a few overs.
Now, however, a similar bullet produces an error which is caught in the depths. Hetmyer falls for 37 of 24, and the Capitals are 163 for 5 in 18.4 overs.
The Death Thrust
Hetmyer and Pant pick up 13 and 12 on the 17th and 18th overs, played by Dwayne Bravo and Hazlewood. The Capitals are 153 for 4 of 18.
By the way, the Capitals have a strike rate of 139.13 when their hitters have not been in control today. Thirty-two runs on 23 balls, with three fours and two sixes. That uncontrollable hitting rate is the best a team has achieved in an inning this season, which is a measure of the luck the Capitals hitters enjoyed today.
A lucky six
Shardul Thakur beats Pant for lack of rhythm with a slower throw of the ball, and Pant ends up swinging way too soon. However, his lower hand pulls away from the grip, giving him good batting speed thanks to his one-handed swish. He has no control over the shot at all, but it goes way over the long limit. The Capitals were somewhat lucky today – Shaw’s first three limits all came off the rim.
After the 16th finished, the Capitals are at 128 for 4.
Two great shots
In the 14th and 15th overs, Shimron Hetmyer hits a short arm pickup for six, off Moeen Ali, and open-face pressure between the third short and the back point, off Dwayne Bravo. Those are the only limits the Capitals have reached since Prithvi Shaw’s sacking, however. They are now 114 for 4 in 15 overs.
4, 7, 6
That’s what the Capitals scored in the 11th, 12th and 13th. Pant and Hetmyer were content to take singles and deuces from deep fielder, but you can’t blame them too much, given the brevity of the Capitals’ batting order.
After 13 overs, the capitals are 96 for 4.
Gambhir: CSK desperately needs to push Rayudu to 3rd place
Great moment, that. Second ball from the 11th, Shaw looks to chip Jadeja on some extra cover, but ends up perhaps chipping the ball straighter than he wants. Faf du Plessis has completed a good sprint to his left for a long time, and Shaw is out for 60 of 34. Wicket timing is also huge, as Shimron Hetmyer has now joined Rishabh Pant with 58 balls remaining in the innings, and Tom Curran, R Ashwin and Kagiso Rabada, the only ones with reasonable hitting ability in the dugout.
Capitals 80 for 4 in 10.2 overs.
The Axar experience doesn’t quite work out
Axar looks to go after Moeen Ali, tries to pull one that’s shorter than a good length but not necessarily short, and ends up lying down. He falls in love with 10 out of 11, and the Capitals are 77 for 3 in 9.4 overs.
Gambhir: Would have chosen Steven Smith instead of Tom Curran
The second pass from Jadeja is worth 10, but it’s not the southpaw who falls on her, but Prithvi Shaw, who cuts it to four to bring in fifty 27 balls, then sweeps it for four more two balls later.
By the end of the ninth, the Capitals are 74-2, with Shaw at 57-30.
Here is also a possible reason why Axar Patel was sent earlier.
An interesting promotion
With Ripal Patel out and Tom Curran in, the Capitals could be seen as having compromised their hitter today. They’ve sort of got around that now, with Axar Patel sent to No.4 to push Rishabh Pant and Shimron Hetmyer a few pitches lower.
It’s also a bit of a question of pairing. Pant, Hetmyer, and Axar are all lefties, and CSK will have a hard time figuring out how and when to use their left arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja. Jadeja knocked down the first full house after Axar entered the seventh inning, and the next was knocked down by Moeen Ali, the offspinner. Now the ninth has started and Jadeja continues her spell. CSK knows they can’t hold it back too much with Pant and Hetmyer coming.
Delhi Capitals are 64 for 2 in eight overs.
Hazlewood strikes again
You can’t take your eyes off this game. Josh Hazlewood keeps CSK in, and he gets his second with a cross-stitched ball. It’s not a good ball, in terms of the line, but it performs just enough off the court, as cross-stitched balls tend to do. He seems to be drifting into Shreyas Iyer’s pads, and he’s looking to push him back, but the ball lands a bit on him and he’s too early in the game. A leading edge appears high and Ruturaj Gaikwad takes the current to his right from the cover point.
The Capitals are 50-2 in 5.3 overs.
Six, six, drop it
Prithvi Shaw absolutely flies off the blocks in Dubai. He hits two sixes on Shardul Thakur’s first five balls on the night – the first an almost straight shovel on the midwicket – but Thakur seems to have his revenge with a slower bouncer outside the stump. Shaw looks to bring it down over the back stitch, but all he gets is a top edge, and MS Dhoni, diving to his right, gives a glove a tough chance.
The Capitals are at 50 for 1 in five overs, and Shaw is down to 42 of 18.
After those two limits off Hazlewood, Shaw gets one more, from the inside edge, from Deepak Chahar’s bowling alley in the third round. Then he picks up three more fours above, one a majestic back punch on a fairly decent ball, and the others gifts from the bowler.
Shikhar Dhawan then came out of his crease and sent Hazlewood back over his head for four in the next round, to take the Capitals to 36 for 0 in 3.1 overs. Just when CSK fans may have started to panic, Hazlewood retorts with a ball from the back a length, crossing the left-hander, and gets a hint of additional stitching and bouncing motion to find the outer edge as he looks towards directing towards the third man.
The first eventful overs, and the Capital letters are 36 to 1 in 3.2.
Can Curran get good today?
In 13 IPL games, Tom Curran has taken 11 wickets while going 11.13 over. These aren’t flattering numbers at all, and he plays a potentially key role today, given that he will likely beat at No.7, behind Axar Patel, and will likely be used to fill in the passes in the middle when Axar or R Ashwin faces unfavorable confrontations. The way it plays out could well have a significant impact on the outcome of tonight’s game.
Its entry, however, is still a long way off. Prithvi Shaw is coming off a four and a six on a pair of top-level pull-ups / hooks over Josh Hazlewood, and the Capitals have 15 points for no loss in two overs.
CSK bowl unchanged, Tom Curran enters for Capitals
MS Dhoni expects conditions in Dubai to improve for the hitters as the game progresses. “It stops a bit at the beginning, then it gets better, it gets more rhythmic.”
No changes for the Super Kings.
Rishabh Pant said he would have liked to play first too. “Slightly nervous, but it’s been a part of every time I walk on the cricket pitch. “
One change for the Capitals. Ripal Patel misses the game and Tom Curran enters. Another crimper, with a bit of punching ability down the order, but it looks like the Capitals’ stick will lack depth today. Marcus Stoinis is still not fit enough to play for them.
Delhi capitals: 1 Prithvi Shaw, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Rishabh Pant (capt and week), 4 Shreyas Iyer, 5 Shimron Hetmyer, 6 Axar Patel, 7 R Ashwin, 8 Tom Curran, 9 Kagiso Rabada, 10 Anrich Nortje, 11 Avesh Khan.
Chennai Super Kings: 1 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 2 Faf du Plessis, 3 Moeen Ali, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 Robin Uthappa, 6 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Dwayne Bravo, 9 Shardul Thakur, 10 Deepak Chahar, 11 Josh Hazlewood .
What winning streak will end today?
The Delhi Capitals have beaten the Chennai Super Kings in each of their last four meetings. The Super Kings, however, have won on the previous two occasions when they met Delhi in the IPL qualifiers. A century M Vijay led them to a massive victory in the second qualifier in 2012, and seven years later, in another second qualifier, half-centuries of Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis propelled the team to yellow. towards a victory of six wickets. in Visakhapatnam,
Can the Capitals break their playoff spell against the Super Kings and extend their recent dominance over MS Dhoni’s men? Or will the Super Kings end their recent losing streak and bring the A game they are known to have led at the end of this tournament? We’ll find out very soon, with the draw in about 20 minutes.
Karthik Krishnaswamy is Senior Editor at ESPNcricinfo