IPL has been a witness to a lot of enticing and thrilling matches going on. From last over finishes to great batting display to some awesome fielding methods that have made the crowd and the fans stay surprised.
Friday night match between Delhi Daredevils and Pune was no different. The former is though out of the race for the playoffs and was playing for pride but the later was playing in a crucial stage to fetch points for heading into the last four stage. But it ended up being a thriller of a match, just like another great show by Delhi, lately.
Twists and climaxes are part and parcel of the game and thus they change into moments, match changing moments that can be remembered for a long time. The game at Feroz Shah Kotla saw Mohammed Shami flaunting his skills and later created a match-defining moment for his side by running out ex-India captain MS Dhoni, as they registered a seven-run win over Rising Pune Supergiant.
Pune had just lost the wicket of Ben Stokes for 33 – with the score at 125/4 – when MS Dhoni walked out to bat. He was greeted with a loud cheer from the thousands of his fans in the stands but it wasn’t Dhoni’s night. Pune fell short by seven runs, managing only 161/7 on the board.
It was a perfect platform for MSD to come out and finish the game with some big shots, but by then the asking rate was too high and he was run out, which happens rarely. To be fair, the former India captain didn’t get too many deliveries to settle down, unlike Manoj Tiwary (64 off 45 balls), who couldn’t take his team over the rope.
In the last over, Tiwary did hit back-to-back sixes off Delhi’s fast bowler Pat Cummins, but it still wasn’t enough. Pune couldn’t recover from that blow as Shami’s direct hit sent Dhoni out of their fortress.
“Dhoni is a game-changer,” Shami said on Friday (May 12). “He runs so fast [between the wickets]. It was a 50-50 situation and I took the chance as [I thought] if it worked, it would help us to win.”
Shami said how important was it to let Dhoni get out and he took the chance well.
“Obviously, you make a plan for any batsman. If Plan A doesn’t work, then try out the second one. We thought of not giving any width for Stokes who is a hitter. And one could see the plan succeeded to a large extent,” he noted.
DD had a poor start to the tournament, winning just two of their first eight matches. Despite winning four of their last five games, they don’t have any chance of qualifying for the playoffs. Shami said that they played for pride and with a mindset of nothing to loose.
“We had a bad start, we had lost a lot of games. We had got into a situation where we started to play with nothing to lose mindset. We tried to look forward,” he said.
With this loss, Pune’s hopes of a playoff berth stills hang in balance as a win over Kings XI Punjab would make them a sure shot contender.