The things went right down to the wire, but Delhi Capitals (DC) managed to hold their nerve and beat Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by three wickets in Match 50 of the VIVO Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 in Dubai on Monday.
Shimron Hetmyer played a fine knock of 28* under pressure as DC, with their 10th win of the season, moved to the top of the points table.
Earlier, in the chase of 137, Prithvi Shaw played some attractive shots before Deepak Chahar struck in the third over to give CSK their first breakthrough.
Shikhar Dhawan though counterattacked as he went after Chahar in the fifth over, creaming two fours and as many sixes. But CSK struck back in the final over of the powerplay as Josh Hazlewood dismissed Shreyas Iyer.
While DC skipper Rishabh Pant moved to 15 in no time, he got out in the 10th over as Ravindra Jadeja scalped his first wicket. Debutant Ripal Patel and Dhawan then took DC past 90 before Jadeja got Ripal out.
Shardul then bowled a double-wicket 15th over, dismissing R Ashwin and Dhawan as CSK reduced DC to 99/6.
Shimron Hetmyer and Axar Patel though kept the DC in the hunt, putting up a game-changing 36-run stand. While CSK kept the things tight, a dropped catch in the 18th over meant that Hetmyer got a reprieve.
Although Axar Patel got out in the final over, DC crossed the finish line with two balls to spare.
CSK, who were put in to bat, made three changes to their team as Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo and Robin Uthappa replaced K M Asif, Sam Curran and Suresh Raina in the team. DC, on the other hand, brought in debutant Ripal Patel in place of Steve Smith.
In the eventful first over, which saw a close DRS call for Ruturaj Gaikwad, a streaky four, a solid cover drive & 16 runs being scored. DC though did not have to wait for too long to scalp the first CSK wicket as Axar Patel dismissed du Plessis in the third over. Two overs later, Anrich Nortje got Ruturaj Gaikwad out.
The Rishabh Pant-led unit continued to chip away as Axar and R Ashwin had the better of Moeen Ali and Uthappa respectively to reduce CSK to 62/4.
CSK needed a partnership to rebuild the innings and the duo of Ambati Rayudu and captain MS Dhoni did just that. The pair took the game deep and helped CSK cross the 100-run mark in the 17th over.
The two completed a 50-run stand as Rayudu creamed a four and six off Avesh Khan in the 18th over. Rayudu then added a four and a six more to his account in the penultimate over and brought up a fine half-century before CSK went on to post 136/5 on the board.
Brief Scores: Delhi Capitals 139/7 (Shikhar Dhawan 39, Shimron Hetmyer 28*; Shardul Thakur 2/13) beat Chennai Super Kings 136/5 (Ambati Rayudu 55*, Robin Uthappa 19; Axar Patel 2/18) by 3 wickets.