Andrew Symonds starred with an impressive all-round effort, first with a quick fire of 35 and later picking up three wickets, to help Deccan Chargers achieve their third consecutive victory in the IPL – a result in contrast to Delhi Daredevils’ run in the competition who had their third consecutive loss. Symonds’ effort was backed up by an attacking knock from Rohit Sharma, who burst into spotlight after a quiet start to the competition to take Deccan to a challenging score of 171 on a slow and low pitch.
David Warner started Delhi’s chase on a perfect note, plundering 29 runs in the first two overs with a flurry of fours and sixes. After scoring two edgy boundaries in the first over off Chaminda Vass, Warner clobbered RP Singh for 20 runs in the second over. He heaved the ball straight down the ground to fetch a maximum and a couple of boundaries before slicing the ball over the point region for a flat six.
Such was Warner’s domination that Virender Sehwag (3) had to wait till the third over to get his first strike. But Sehwag’s stay at the crease didn’t last too long, as Pragyan Ojha struck in the fourth over to get the Delhi swashbuckler caught at long-off by Gibbs.
AB de Villiers gave Warner a good company, supporting him in a 51-run stand that gave Delhi the upper hand with two set batsman in the middle.
The partnership’s end, however, marked a decisive moment in Delhi’s chase. Warner attempted an impossible run, to be caught short at the striker’s end. de Villiers soon fell, bowled off a full toss from Rahul Sharma in the 13th over, and when Mithun Manhas holed out the same bowler to Suman 14 balls later, the game had turned Deccan’s way.
Moises Henriques and Dinesh Karthik (46) did raise Delhi’s hopes by indulging in some big hitting and took the target to 16 runs from 11 balls. But Andrew Symonds and Chaminda Vaas produced two splendid last overs which yielded four wickets. Symonds was particularly impressive, picking up three wickets for 21 runs, including a brilliant caught and bowled to send Karthik back in the penultimate over.
Earlier, Delhi’s ploy of bringing slow bowlers against foreign players worked wonderfully as they grabbed first three wickets. Karthik introduced Mishra who bowled the first over and bowled Mohnish Mishra for 1. Gilchrist who had a quick fire of 24 got out in the bowling of Ladda. Both the batsmen were out by wrong turn.
Gibbs, after smacking Dirk Nannes for two fours and two sixes, cut Yogesh Nagar straight to point. Symonds, with the confidence of two half-centuries behind him, looked ominous during his knock, finding the ropes with ease using the conventional shots but a mistimed slog put an end to his stay, as he slapped one straight to extra cover in the 14th over.
Suman, though, kept Deccan on course, picking out Henriques and Nannes for three boundaries before Rohit took off at the other end. Umesh Yadav was smashed for 18 in the 17th over, pulled over square leg and struck over long-on for sixes and sliced over point for a boundary. Henriques, too, wasn’t spared, as he was dispatched over the ropes by Rohit in the next over, which fetched another 14. His parting shot was a steer over point off Nannes before a miscue to mid-off ended his innings. The final two overs yielded just 15, but Deccan’s bowlers were able to put an under-performing Delhi under pressure and accomplish a hard-fought win.