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IPL 10, Match 42, Who Said What: Delhi Daredevils v Gujarat Lions

Samson particularly hit just 7 sixes and no boundaries, he fell after his half century while Pant smacked 9 sixes and 6 fours looked good to convert his stupendous knock into a hundred.

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Rishabh Pant of Delhi Daredevils
Rishabh Pant of Delhi Daredevils. (Photo: Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

When a young, inconsistent Delhi Daredevils batting line-up was asked to chase 209 runs by the Gujarat Lions powered by Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik’s half centuries and 133 runs partnership it looked improbable. Feroz Shah Kotla had never seen a successful chase beyond 188 which was acclaimed by the Chennai Super Kings a few years ago.

But as Sanju Samson walked out to initiate their effort and was soon joined by Rishabh Pant things took a different turn. Two young Indian batsmen, one is 22 and the other just 19 but the way they batted and the absolute disdain with which they treated this target speaks volumes of their talent, confidence and fearless attitude that they carry.

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To better Gujarat Lions’ total, they put up a 143-run second wicket partnership taking all the bowlers to the cleaners hitting humongous and some mean sixes. Samson particularly smashed just 7 sixes and no boundaries, he fell after his half century while Pant thumped 9 sixes and 6 fours looked good to convert his stupendous knock into a hundred. But he couldn’t become the youngest centurion in the IPL as he was caught behind just 3 runs short.

The job was almost done by then – Shreyas Iyer and Corey Anderson completed the formalities without much ado and Delhi won the game by 7 wickets to keep their playoffs hope alive and killing it for the Lions.

Karun Nair was mighty pleased with the effort of his team and said: “Amazing performance. One of the best p’ships I have ever seen. Can’t have a plan when you are chasing so much. So glad we could pull this off. We spoke about playing with freedom couple of matches ago, and so happy we are going out there and executing it.”

When someone plays the kind of knock Pant did, the opposition skipper has little to talk about.

Suresh Raina in the post-match presentation said: “I think it is a Rishabh Pant day. He batted really well along with Sanju Samson. We tried everything – the slower ball, yorker – but couldn’t stop the runs. The ball started reversing later, but by then the game was over. 206 (208 actually) was still defendable but we didn’t bowl well. We miss the experience of Tye and Bravo. Rishabh and Sanju are the future of the Indian team. I have been hitting the ball really well, maybe I would say 20 runs short, but credit to Sanju and Rishabh.”

The Man of the Match award had to go to this young Indian cricketer and he proved to be a man of few words, a hint of innocence, he isn’t overwhelmed despite playing such an inning while also appreciated Samson’s effort.

Rishabh Pant said: “Me and Sanju always thought, if we get a bad ball, we will make full use of that. If we get three regularly (consecutively), we will go for the sixes. Most of the times I like to play aggressive, but this was that kind of a wicket where we could play our shots and that’s what we did today. We are taking one match at a time and we are doing good at that. So let’s continue doing that. Thank you so much (says it like a man of few words would)”

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