At the Narendra Modi Stadium in this city on Tuesday, Delhi Capitals defeated Gujarat Titans by five runs despite captain Hardik Pandya's unbeaten fifty (59 not out) and Mohammed Shami's four-fer (4-11).
Despite a valiant fifty from Aman Hakim Khan (51 off 44), Gujarat Titans were able to hold Delhi Capitals to 130/8 in 20 overs thanks to veteran bowler Shami's astonishing four-fer. Axar Patel (27 off 30) and Ripal Patel (23 off 13) were the two major contributors with the bat following Aman, while Mohit Sharma (2-33) and Rashid Khan (1-28) were the other Titans wicket-takers.
Chasing a modest target, Delhi Capitals likewise got off to a bad start, losing three wickets in the Power-play while only scoring 31 runs. The first strike for Delhi Capitals came from Khaleel Ahmed, who finished off Wriddhiman Saha's opening over of the innings by having him caught behind for a duck.
Hardik Pandya, the captain, entered the middle to join Shubman Gill, who had a successful start by smashing a boundary off Ishant Sharma. Gill, who timed the ball to the cover fielder, was immediately dispatched by Anrich Nortje, who had just entered the assault.
Gujarat had high expectations for Vijay Shankar, who has been in excellent form this year. However, Ishant delivered a stunning knuckleball to dismiss the Tamil Nadu batter, putting Titans in a vulnerable situation at 26-3 after 4.6 overs.
Gujarat, the defending champions, needed a partnership to rebuild their innings, but newcomer David Miller attempted a sweet paddle sweep off Kuldeep Yadav but was dismissed, further complicating matters for his side.
When Miller was dismissed, the Gujarat Titans were 32-4, and Hardik watched as each of his batting partners returned to the pavilion one at a time. When the captain requested assistance, Abhinav Manohar provided it.
The spin twins Kuldeep and Axar Patel, who were bowling well to keep things under control for Delhi, were faced with caution by the combo of Hardik and Abhinav. After bowling a few overs of spin, Warner switched back to his pacers, who continued to bowl brilliantly despite sometimes giving up boundaries as the needed run rate increased with each passing over.
Gujarat Titans were 71/4 after 14 overs as Hardik and Abhinav continued to grind out runs as Warner used bowling variations in quest of breakthroughs and didn't allow the hitters to calm down.
The needed run rate was becoming higher, so Pandya chose to relax and hit a few boundaries to reach fifty in 44 balls. Abhinav, however, was unable to locate any boundaries, and Khaleel Ahmed put a stop to his battle with the first ball of the 18th over. Gujarat's situation became more challenging when Khaleel perfectly executed his slower pitches and yorkers, allowing just four runs in his over.
Gujarat needed to score 33 runs in 12 balls when Anrich Nortje entered the game to bowl the 19th over. Although the pacer only allowed three runs in the first three balls, Tewatia had other ideas and hit Nortje for three straight sixes to tip the balance in Gujarat's favour.
Ishant, a veteran player, was faced with a daunting assignment when Gujarat needed 12 runs in 6 balls to win. However, he maintained composure, struck out Tewatia, and required only 5 runs to secure the victory for Delhi Capitals.
Gujarat Titans 125-6 in 20 overs (Hardik Pandya 59 not out, Abhinav Manohar 26; Ishant Sharma 2-23, Khaleel Ahmed 2-24) were defeated by Delhi Capitals 130/8 in 20 overs (Aman Hakim Khan 51, Axar Patel 27; Md Shami 4-11, Mohit Sharma 2-33) by 5 runs.