Shikhar Dhawan and Shreyas Iyer slammed brilliant half-centuries but Rajasthan Royals restricted Delhi Capitals to 161 for 7 in the Dream11 Indian Premier League match at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Opting to bat on a sporting pitch, Delhi Capitals received two early jolts. Jofra Archer sent back Prithvi Shaw with a beauty of a delivery on the very first ball of the match. With such a fantastic start, Rajasthan Royals were pumped up and one can see the spring in their strides in the initial overs.
Ajinkya Rahane was the second victim of Archer. The No. 3 batsman struggled to negotiate the pace of Archer and Jaydev Unadkat. He consumed nine deliveries to make two runs.
With two down for 10 in 2.3 overs, Delhi Capitals were in a spot of bother. However, skipper Shreyas Iyer joined Dhawan and began the repairing job. The duo adopted attack is the best form of defence and displayed attractive strokes to all the corners of the ground.
The left-right combination of Dhawan and Iyer stitched together an important partnership of 85 runs at a fairly brisk pace.
Dhawan departed after making a quick-fire 57 off just 33 balls. The aggressive southpaw smashed six fours and a couple of sixes to steady the Delhi Capitals innings. Dhawan looked in splendid nick from the onset as he dished out his trademark pulls and shots square off the off-side. It was his 39th half-century in the IPL.
Iyer (53: 43 balls, 3×4, 2×6) continued his solid batting and reached his fifty. However soon after he perished as he was held in the deep by Archer off Kartik Tyagi.
In-form all-rounder Marcus Stoinis and wicketkeeper-batsman Alex Carey, who was playing in place of an injured Rishabh Pant, contributed 18 and 14, respectively. They tried hard but could not accelerate the scoring.
Axar Patel remained unbeaten on 7. In the last five overs, Delhi Capitals struggled to get going and mustered just 32 runs for the loss of four wickets.
Archer was the star performer for Rajasthan Royals. The English all-rounder not only scalped three crucial wickets conceding mere 19 runs, the big player also snapped two superb catches.
Left-arm paceman Jaydev Unadkat gave able support to Archer and picked up a couple of wickets. Kartik Tyagi and Shreyas Gopal chipped in with a wicket apiece.
Delhi Capitals 161 for 7 in 20 overs (Shikhar Dhawan 57, Shreyas Iyer 53, Marcus Stoinis 18, Alex Carey 14; Jofra Archer 3-19, Jaydev Unadkat 2-32, Kartik Tyagi 1-30, Shreyas Gopal 1-31) vs Rajasthan Royals.