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Daredevils get thrashed after falling for 67

Kings XI Punjab 68 for 0 (Guptill 50*) beat Delhi Daredevils 67 (Sandeep 4-20) by 10 wickets

Kings XI Punjab

Sandeep Sharma struck in his first over and just kept going © BCCI

Sixty-seven all out. That is the worst total in the first innings of an IPL match and the unqualified worst for the Delhi Daredevils in 10 years of franchise cricket. The bottom-placed team in 2017 burrowed further underground as Sandeep Sharma exploited a slow Mohali pitch to deliver a career-best 4 for 20.

The Kings XI Punjab openers gunned down their target in 7.5 overs with Martin Guptill making 50 runs all by himself.

The Powerplay specialist

Glenn Maxwell’s confidence to bowl first rested on his understanding that overnight rain could have juiced up the playing surface. He totally forgot he had the best Powerplay bowler this season.

No one has bested Sandeep’s tally of balls (114) and dots (62) bowled, or even wickets taken (6) in the first six overs of an innings. But his success on Sunday was down to an understanding that hitting the deck and keeping it straight would be enough to confound the batsmen.

Vertical bat shots are difficult on a slow pitch. Sandeep, fully aware of that, kept tempting the Daredevils to go for them. Sanju Samson was caught off a flick with a strike-rate of 35 – his slowest IPL innings of 10 balls or more. Shreyas Iyer drove one back into the bowler’s hand. The chaos had begun.

The lay up

Coming in with the opposition at 29 for 4 with no fielding restrictions is paradise for a spinner. Axar Patel made it even better with a wicket first ball, removing Karun Nair, who was captaining for the first time in T20 cricket. Maxwell, then, brought himself into the attack, eager to deny a choking team the oxygen they needed, also known as pace on the ball. Together they bowled eight overs for only 34 runs and the Kings XI captain even recorded his most economical four-over spell – 1 for 12.

The finish

Daredevils crawled to 37 for 6 in 10 overs and were bowled out in 17.1, hitting a mere five boundaries. Kings XI rocketed past that score, with more hits to the fence, when the chase was only 27 balls old.

Guptill was listed to bat in the middle over, but the team management did well to push him out to open. He collected his 32nd T20 fifty, Kings XI’s net run-rate went from -0.44 to +0.23 and so the second-shortest IPL match in history with only 150 balls bowled came to an end.

Credit:@ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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