IPL 2012: Delhi Finish On Top, Kings XI Make Exit
Delhi Daredevils 145-4 (Warner 79) beat
Kings XI Punjab 141-8 by six wickets
Indian Premier League 2012, Dharmasala
In their last league game of the Indian Premier League 2012, Delhi Daredevils beat Kings XI Punjab by six wickets at Dharmasala.
This result was an important one in determining the line-up for the play-offs. Delhi have topped the table with 22 points, while Mumbai have qualified as the third team. Kings XI have been knocked out of the running as the fourth spot is now dependent on Royal Challengers Bangalore match against Deccan Chargers tomorrow.
Mahela Jayawardene was once again leading the side in absence of Virender Sehwag and elected to field first, after winning the toss.
In a must-win game, Kings XI got off to the worst possible start as Delhi’s pacers wreaked havoc. The Punjab top order failed completely, reduced to 20 for four in the sixth over.
Umesh Yadav accounted for Adam Gilchrist (9), Mandeep Singh (0) and David Hussey (3) as Morne Morkel sent back Paul Valthaty for two runs.
From there onwards, Kings were in salvage mode and never really in the fight, although Siddharth Chitnis and Azhar Mahmood repaired the innings with a 57 run partnership for the fifth wicket.
Chitnis top scored with 38 off 32 balls, including five fours and one six, and Mahmood made 36 off 38 balls. He hit four fours and one six, helping Kings cross the 100-run mark.
Gurkeerat Singh provided some fireworks towards the end, scoring a quickfire 26 off 11 balls, hitting four fours and one six. His knock helped Punjab finish at 141 for eight in 20 overs.
Yadav finished his four overs with three for 19 and one maiden over. Morkel regained the Purple Cap, picking up four for 20 in his spell.
Delhi’s new opening pair Unmukt Chand and David Warner gave them a blistering start, making sure the required run rate never got too big. The opening pair put on 86 runs and in 8.2 overs, the runs came in double quick time.
Chand was more the mute spectator in this partnership as he scored only 18 off 24 balls, with two sixes. It was Warner who sped forward with his big hitting, smacking 79 off 44 balls.
He hit ten fours and four sixes, knocking the wind out of Kings’ push for a play-off spot. Warner fell in the 13th over but at that time, Delhi were only 36 runs away from victory. Venugopal Rao (21 runs off 19 balls) completed the formalities with ten balls to spare.
Following the game, Kings XI captain Adam Gilchrist intimated at the press conference that he may have played his last IPL game.
Having led the Deccan Chargers to victory in the 2009 tournament, he missed a large chunk of this season through injury.
© Cricket World 2012