Shikhar Dhawan’s delightful 69 dwarfed Mayank Agarwal’s unbeaten 99 as Delhi Capitals defeated Punjab Kings by seven wickets in the IPL here on Sunday to go atop the points table.
Agarwal, leading the side in the absence of regular skipper K L Rahul, used the straight bat effectively in his lone hand to take Punjab Kings to 166 for six. Delhi Capitals hardly broke a sweat in the run chase, cantering to victory in 17.4 overs overs, their sixth win in eight matches.
For Punjab Kings, it was their fifth loss in eight games, summing up their inconsistent run so far.The destructive opening duo of Prithvi Shaw (39 off 22) and Dhawan (69 not out off 47) gave another flying start to Delhi who raced to 63 for no loss in six overs. Both struck delightful drives and punches on the off-side.
Against the run of play, left-arm spinner Harpeet Brar carried on from where he left off in the game against RCB to dismiss the set Shaw on his very first ball which turned just enough to clip the off-stump.After that wicket, Punjab were able to bring down the scoring rate by conceding almost run-a-ball from over 7 to 10.
However, they also needed regular wickets to keep themselves in the game but that never came.Following Steve Smith’s downfall, Dhawan stepped on the accelerator and swept Ravi Bishnoi for a six to complete his 44th fifty in the IPL. It was followed by couple of fours in the same over.
From there on, there was no stopping Delhi as in the end West Indian batsman Shimron Hetmyer (16 off 4) smashed two sixes and a four in the 18th over to take DC home with 14 balls to spare. Earlier, Agarwal single handedly took the team past 160 with his crucial knock comprising eights fours and four sixes.