Recent Match Report – Punjab Kings vs Capitals 32nd Match 2022

Recent Match Report - Punjab Kings vs Capitals 32nd Match 2022

The Delhi Capitals players spent the last four days inside their hotel rooms, unsure if they would get to play this match. They even had a change of venues to facilitate the match, but till about an hour before the game, they didn’t have the go-ahead to go to the ground, especially with a sixth member, Tim Seifert, testing positive for Covid-19 on the day. From the moment they were uncaged, almost everything went right: they won the toss, bowled Punjab Kings out for 115, and chased it down in 10.3 overs to earn some extra time off before they went back into their rooms.

Punjab Kings, who have now lost more tosses than any side this IPL, stayed true to their aggressive approach but didn’t have the depth to match, especially with Odean Smith dropped for a specialist bowler, Nathan Ellis. Wickets kept falling – two each to Lalit Yadav, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel and Khaleel Ahmed – on what Axar called a sticky surface, although it didn’t look too sticky when the Capitals batters ended the chase in a hurry.

Agarwal gets off to a flier
Mayank Agarwal, who missed the last game with injury, came back but that didn’t make any difference to Kings’ luck at the toss. Asked to bat first, Agarwal started off with intent. Staying beside the line of the ball he hit three boundaries in three overs before picking one off into the leg side last ball of the third as Shardul Thakur tried to cramp him for room. Kings were 27 for no loss in three overs with traditionally more expensive powerplay overs to come.

A wicket an over times four
Rishabh Pant played match-ups by bowling Lalit to Shikhar Dhawan and got a wicket immediately, although not conceivably in a planned manner. This was a long hop down the leg side, Dhawan tried to help it along to fine leg, but just didn’t get there in time, and Pant took a special catch off the face of the bat. In the next over, Agarwal, trying to stay beside the line, ended up playing on to Mustafizur Rahman.

This wasn’t going to slow Kings down in the last over of the powerplay. Liam Livingstone tried to take Axar down, but missed wildly and got stumped. In the next over, Jonny Bairstow nailed a flat pull off Khaleel, but found long leg with precision. Four wickets gone for 21 runs.

A new bunch of four
Jitesh Sharma and Shahrukh Khan stemmed the fall of wickets – Jitesh even managed a strike rate of about 140 – but their partnership ended at 31. Jitesh tried to sweep one of the most difficult bowlers to sweep – Axar – and paid the price with an lbw. In the one match that Kings didn’t play Smith, they found themselves five down with the best part of eight overs to go.

Kuldeep then went through Kagiso Rabada and Ellis in the 14th over, Rabada with the wrong’un and Ellis with the conventional wristspin. When Shahrukh edged a Khaleel offcutter through to Pant in the next over, the last hope of a fighting total disappeared.

The last two wickets added 23 but not at a pace that would bother Capitals.

Shaw, Warner romp home

The target was never going to test the Capitals batters, but they were not going to stroll to it. Teams are aware how important net run-rate can be. Not that Prithvi Shaw needs any extra motivation to go from ball one, but David Warner, too, could play much more freely than he does as the experienced batter in the side.

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