Pune: A fantastic knock by Shubman Gill (84 off 46) and clinical bowling performance by Lockie Ferguson (4/24) led Gujarat Titans to a 14-run win over Delhi Capitals in an IPL 2022 match at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, here on Saturday.
Opening the batting, Shubman played a sparkling knock and propelled Gujarat Titans to 171-6 in 20 overs. It was also Gill’s highest T20 score. Apart from Gill, skipper Hardik Pandya (31 off 27) and David Miller (20 not out off 15) also made valuable contributions with the bat for Gujarat, who were invited to bat first.
Chasing a challenging target, Delhi Capitals were off to a terrible start as Hardik Pandya got rid of Tim Seifert (3) in his first ball. Mandeep Singh (18) then joined Prithvi Shaw (10) and they played some attacking shots before Lockie Ferguson dismissed both batters in the same over to put Gujarat Titans on top.
Thereafter, Rishabh Pant (43) and Lalit Yadav (25) steadied the Delhi innings. They kept Delhi in the chase with some timely boundaries before a run out ended Lalit’s innings. Pant nudged the ball into the leg-side and they tried to steal the second run but Manohar’s throw at the non-striker’s end was on the money, catching the batter short.
Pant and R Powell, who came to bat next, took on Tewatia by cracking a few shots. However every single time Delhi seemed to have found a way out of a dark tunnel, Ferguson shut the door on them. The Kiwi pacer dismissed both Pant and Axar Patel in the same over, leaving DC in deep trouble. It got from bad to worse when Shardul Thakur tried to slog Rashid but was trapped in front.
Shami (2/30) then tricked R Powell with the cutter while Khaleel was done in by hard length in the same over, putting Delhi in more trouble. In the end, Delhi Capitals were restricted to 157-9 in 20 overs, losing by 14 runs.
Earlier, Gujarat Titans didn’t have a great start as Mustafizur Raham struck in the first over to dismiss Matthew Wade for 1. However, the wicket didn’t affect Shubman Gill, who played some strokes to score some quick runs for Gujarat. On the other hand, Vijay Shankar, who came to bat at No 3 was struggling to time the ball against the Delhi seamers.
Nevertheless, Gill continued his beast mode and took Gujarat to 44/1 after the 6 overs. As soon as the powerplay came to an end, skipper Rishabh Pant brought Kuldeep Yadav into the attack and he gave Delhi the breakthrough in the very first ball of the over by removing Vijay Shankar (13).
With two down, Gujarat were in a spot of bother and Gill and skipper Hardik Pandya took a cautious approach to keep the scoreboard ticking with singles and doubles. After spending enough time in the middle, Hardik decided to up the ante and hit Thakur for two fours, giving some impetus to his team. At the other end, Gill also completed his fifty off 32 balls and then smashed Khaleel Ahmed for back-to-back boundaries.
With both Gill and Pandya going strong, Delhi desperately needed a wicket and Khaleel broke the dangerous stand by removing the Gujarat skipper for 31 off 27. But Gill was in a different mood and dealt in sixes against Delhi spinners — Axar and Kuldeep.
Delhi got some respite from Gill’s six-hitting spree as he used his slower deliveries to perfection and conceded just runs in his over to slow down things. But, it was Khaleel, who finally got the big wicket of Gill. The batter played a pull shot but failed to get the desired distance and the ball went straight into the hands of Axar Patel at deep mid-wicket.
After Gill’s wicket in the 18th over, Gujarat Titans could not hit the fifth gear, which was required for a solid finish. David Miller (20), and Rahul Tewatia (14) tried to break the shackles but Mustafizur was just too good with his cutters and change of pace. The Bangladesh pacer conceded just four runs in the 20th over as Gujarat Titans finished with 171 for 6.
Mustafizur (3/23) was the highest wicket-taker for Delhi Capitals while Khaleel Ahmed (2/34) and Kuldeep Yadav (1/32) also chipped in with wickets.
Brief scores: Gujarat Titans 171/6 in 20 overs (Shubman Gill 84, Hardik Pandya 31; Mustafizur Rahman 3/23) beat Delhi 157/9 in 20 overs (Rishabh Pant 43, Lalit Yadav 25; Lockie Ferguson 4/24) by 14 runs.