Riding on the back of two consecutive victories, a spirited Delhi Daredevils side played out of the skin to pull off one of their memorable wins against defending champions Mumbai Indians at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium in New Delhi on 23 April.
It was the highly-talked about bowling unit of Delhi that made all the difference in the end. Amit Mishra and Imran Tahir bowled their leg-spin in tandem to set the tone, while Chris Morris' precision in line and length lead the hosts to an emphatic 10-run win.
Mishra troubled the opposition batsmen with his googlies, finishing his spell of four overs at 2-24. South African all-rounder Morris stuck to the basics, bowling full length deliveries right in the block hole to finish his spell at 1-27.
Chasing the moderate total of 164 runs, Mumbai lost their opener Parthiv Patel (1) to a run-out early in the innings. However, a 53-run partnership between skipper Rohit Sharma (65) and Ambati Rayudu (25) for the second wicket boosted their run-chase.
Desperate to get a breakthrough, Delhi skipper Zaheer Khan introduced Mishra who repaid the faith of his captain by dismissing Rayudu on a classic googly that rattled the stumps in the eighth over. Rayudu's dismissal saw the promotion of Krunal Pandya in the batting order for Mumbai.
The left-handed batsman smashed four fours and two sixes in his blistering 17-ball knock of 36 runs. While Pandya was busy smashing the Delhi bowlers to all around the park, Rohit looked happy in rotating the strike and anchor the chase for Mumbai.
The duo added 41 runs off 25 balls for the third wicket as the partnership began threatening the chances for Delhi in the match. But, just when it looked like Mumbai run away with the game, Zak's brilliance in the field effected Pandya's run-out that turned the tide in Delhi's favour.
Pandya's dismissal opened the floodgates with the Mumbai batsmen succumbing to pressure and the spin brilliance of Mishra and Tahir. Swashbuckling Jos Buttler (2) became the second victim of Mishra's wicket-taking googly after he was rapped on the pads in front of the stumps.
The leg-spin employed at both ends by Delhi kept the Mumbai batsmen guessing as the asking rate jumped to 16 runs. With 32 required from 12 deliveries, the Delhi captain gave away 11 runs and took the crucial wicket of Kieron Pollard (19) in the 19th over.
In the end, it all came down to the final over where Mumbai were counting on their captain to see them through, while Morris carried the hopes for Delhi. With 21 to get in the final six deliveries, Rohit clobbered the second ball to a towering six to ignite the chances for the visitors.
But, on the very next delivery, a discomforting collision between Hardik Pandaya (2*) and Rohit instigated the run-out of the Mumbai captain to the sheer joy of the Delhi crowd. Morris conceded just 10 runs in the last over to script an enthralling win for the home side.
Earlier, asked to bat, Delhi's troublesome innings was rescued by the crucial knocks of Sanju Samson (60) and JP Duminy (49*) who added 71 runs for the fourth wicket to guide the hosts to a competitive total.
Quinton de Kock (9), who has scored 46 per cent of the runs for his side this season, missed out in today's match after falling to Mitchell McClenaghan in the second over. Shreyas Iyer (19) failed to convert his start into a big score, while Karun Nair (5) also fell cheaply.
McClenaghan was the pick of the bowlers for Mumbai with figures of 2-31 in four overs. Krunal Pandaya went wicketless, but the left-arm spinner kept the opposition batsmen at bay with his economical spell of 0-25.
The third consecutive win for Delhi has propelled them to the second spot with six points in their kitty. On the other hand, the IPL campaign of Mumbai, currently languishing in the lower-half of the table, seems to be in a spot of bother with four losses and just two wins in their six matches.
Here's a look at some key statistics from the IPL, Match 17 between Delhi Daredevils and Mumbai Indians:
- Mumbai's Mitchell McClenaghan took two wickets for 31 runs against Delhi and became the highest wicket-taker in the IPL this season. He has, so far, taken nine wickets in six matches for Mumbai this year.
- Rohit Sharma's knock of 65 runs against Delhi has propelled him to the fourth spot in the list of leading run-scorers in the IPL this year. He has now amassed 230 runs in six matches for Mumbai.
- Mumbai managed to score just 56 runs in the last eight overs today, while Delhi amassed 80. In the first 12 overs, Mumbai scored 98 runs in comparison to Delhi's 84.
- Delhi's Amit Mishra, who took 2-24 against Mumbai, is now third in the list of leading wicket-takers in the IPL this season. The leg-spinner has taken seven wickets at an average of 10.28 in four matches for Delhi.
- In his first 13 balls, Rohit Sharma whacked six fours but the right-hander couldn't score a boundary for the next 30 deliveries.
- Krunal Pandya's strike-rate of 187.50 in the IPL this season is the best by any batsmen this year. He also boasts an impressive batting average of 105 in the tournament this year.
- Rohit Sharma's knock of 65 runs today was his 28th fifty-plus score for Mumbai Indians in the IPL. Gautam Gambhir and David Warner are the other two batsmen to have achieved the feat.
- Mumbai Indians scored 10 fours in the powerplay overs today, scoring 52 runs. Delhi Daredevils could only score four fours and a six in their powerplay overs.
- Hardik Pandya has taken just three wickets at a strike-rate of 55 in 15 IPL matches. However, in T20 Internationals, he has taken 15 wickets at a strike-rate of 18 in 16 matches.
- JP Duminy reached the 5000-run mark in T20s at an impressive average of 38.57. Among the 17 batsmen with 5000+ T20 runs, only Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli have better averages.