IPL 2018: Riding on Rishabh Pant’s blitzkrieg Delhi Daredevils posted a target of 188 runs against Sunrisers Hyderabad at Feroz Shah Kotla. With the carnage that Pant brought at Kotla, he registered the highest individual score of 128 in Indian Premier League history. He surpassed Chennai Super Kings’ Murali Vijay who scored 127 in 2010 against Rajasthan Royals. At the third spot is Virender Sehwag who scored 122 against CSK in 2014 and the fourth position is secured by P Valthaty who bagged an unbeaten 120 against Chennai in 2011.
Electing to bat, Delhi had themselves to blame for a sluggish start which saw them lose the opening duo of Prithvi Shaw and Jason Roy in consecutive deliveries before skipper Shreyas Iyer departed off a silly run-out. Left-arm spinner Shakib Al Hasan left the hosts high and dry with the wickets of Shaw (9) and Roy (11) off the last two balls of his very first over.
Shaw departed after top-edging a short delivery to the safe hands of Shikhar Dhawan at cover before Roy nicked the next delivery back to Shreevats Goswami. Delhi immediately invited more trouble for themselves after skipper Iyer (3) was caught short of the non-striker’s end by a mile, thanks to his terrible miscommunication with Pant for the second time this season.
Fortunately for Delhi, the fall of three quick wickets did not affect Pant, whose purple patch with the bat continued and together with Harshal Patel (24 from 17 balls; 6×2) steadied the ship with a 55-run stand for the fourth wicket. With five overs left in the innings, Delhi stared at some sort of respectability before another miscommunication between the batsmen ended Patel’s stay.
Pant, however, continued his onslaught as he launched Shakib for a massive six to bring up his half-century in 36 balls even as the out-of-form Glenn Maxwell joined the southpaw in the middle.
The Delhi stumper, who became the youngest to 1000 IPL runs, immediately moved into the 90s when he clobbered Afghan leg-spinner Rashid Khan for a four and a six off consecutive balls before treating Bhuvneshwar Kumar with disdain.