The 13th season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) was originally scheduled to kick off on March 29. The spread of the COVID-19 virus has resulted in an indefinite postponement with the possibility of it being cancelled. So we’re reliving some of the best clashes between the franchises and standout performances. Delhi Capitals (DC) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) was set to be the blockbuster match of the day (April 22) as per the original schedule.
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
As per the original schedule, Shreyas Iyer-led DC would have locked horns with Virat Kohli-led RCB. A mix of veterans and young stars would have taken the field. Alex Carey in his debut season, Shimron Hetmyer facing his ex-franchise for the first time, Aaron Finch playing for another franchise again, and R Ashwin would have been at his aggressive best.
The Delhi and Bangalore franchises have been part of the IPL for the past 12 years but haven’t ever won the league. Delhi haven’t ever reached the finals despite reaching playoffs four times, while RCB have reached the finals twice.
Under the leadership of Iyer, DC reached the playoffs after six years in 2019. Under Kohli, RCB have reached playoffs twice and the final in 2016. But they’ve also finished at the bottom of the table twice.
Delhi has dominated over Bangalore in the early seasons but the latter started to notch up victories after a few seasons. Delhi have won eight matches, Bangalore have won 13 whereas one match did not yield a result due to rain interruption.
Games that went right down to the wire:
McGrath shows how it’s done (2008)
When the two teams went up against each other for the first time, Virender Sehwag was captain of Delhi and Rahul Dravid of Bangalore. Batting first, Delhi got off to a terrific start with Gautam Gambhir and Sehwag opening the innings. The skipper departed after a 12-ball 24 but Gambhir then shared a 98-run stand with Shikhar Dhawan. Gambhir scored 86 runs from 54 balls before Zaheer Khan dismissed him. Dhawan scored a 33-ball 50 that had four fours and three sixes, helping the side post 191/5.
As an experiment, Dravid sent Praveen Kumar to open the innings with Wasim Jaffer to score quickly. However, the plan backfired as experienced Australian opening bowler Glenn McGrath got rid of both of them in the powerplay overs. Ross Taylor tried to speed things up but fell victim to McGrath after scoring a 15-ball 29.
A partnership between Jacques Kallis and Dravid for the fourth wicket got them close to the target but McGrath came back into the attack again to get skipper’s wicket. Kallis departed soon, succumbing to the pressure after scoring 54 runs from 44 deliveries.
There was only a little Kohli could do when he came to bat at No.7 and faced just one delivery in the run chase. RCB lost the match by 10 runs.
Dilshan scoops it out for Delhi (2009)
After winning the toss and electing to bat first, RCB got off to a bad start, losing Kallis for a duck and Robin Uthappa for just three runs. RCB kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Skipper Kevin Pietersen, Taylor, Kohli and Boucher got starts but could not convert them into big scores as RCB managed to post 149/7.
Chasing 150, Delhi lost Gambhir and Sehwag in the powerplay overs as Pankaj Singh struck twice with the new ball. Then Tillakaratne Dilshan took charge of the run chase. AB de Villiers struggled against the spin and could score just 21 runs. Dinesh Karthik was dismissed in the 16th over leaving 43 runs to be scored in the last four overs.
Dilshan took on Kallis in the 17th over and reached his half-century with a six. He then hit two more boundaries to release the pressure. With Mithun Manhas contributing from the other end with a 13-ball 23, Delhi chased down the target with four balls to spare. Dilshan remained unbeaten on 67 from 46 deliveries.
Vettori’s brigade stops Delhi’s Hopes (2011)
It was one of James Hopes’ best IPL performances. David Warner was dismissed cheaply and Sehwag was run out thanks to AB de Villiers’ athleticism. Hopes came to bat at No.3 and batted till the penultimate over, and ended with 54 runs from 43 deliveries. Irfan Pathan’s two sixes in the death overs helped Delhi post 160/6.
RCB received an early blow in the tricky run chase as Dilshan was dismissed on a golden duck by Ashoke Dinda. But Chris Gayle and Kohli then took over. Gayle departed for 26 in the eighth over thanks to Hopes with required run rate just above six runs per over. In the next over, de Villiers was run out by Warner. Kohli reached his half-century from 31 deliveries but was dismissed for 56.
RCB needed 22 runs from three overs and were seven wickets down. But skipper Daniel Vettori and tailender Jamaluddin Syed Mohammad (with a 10-ball 13) took RCB to victory with three balls to spare.
Rampaul pulls off Super Over heist (2013)
Skipper Kohli won the toss and elected to field first. A brilliant bowling effort from the RCB restricted Delhi for 152/5. It was Kedar Jadhav’s 16-ball 29 and Irfan Pathan’s 8-ball 19 in the death overs that helped Delhi post a fighting total. After losing Gayle and KL Rahul early in the powerplay overs, Kohli and de Villiers took over the run chase. Their 103-run partnership for the third-wicket put RCB in the driver’s seat but the South African’s wicket turned the tide.
RCB suffered a batting collapse and Kohli tried to finish it off, but Umesh Yadav dismissed him in the penultimate over. Kohli had scored 65 from 50 deliveries. RCB needed 15 runs from eight balls. Caribbean bowler Ravi Rampaul turned out to be the unlikely hero for RCB as he managed to score 12 runs from seven deliveries, levelling the scores.
In the super over, de Villiers’ two sixes off Yadav helped RCB score 15 runs. Delhi sent out Warner and Pathan but Rampaul dismissed the Australian off the first ball. Delhi then sent Ben Rohrer instead of the in-form Jadhav. Pathan smashed a four and six, but Rohrer could not connect with the ball and ended up getting bowled off the last delivery.
Kohli’s lucky 99 (2013)
After Cheteshwar Pujara and Gayle were dismissed in the powerplay overs, Kohli stabilised the innings with Australia’s Moises Henriques. De Villiers was pushed down the order, but he and Kohli wreaked havoc in the last four overs. After his half-century, Kohli ran amok and hit Yadav for three sixes and a boundary in the 18th over. In the last over he needed 24 runs to hit a maiden IPL hundred but fell short by one run as he was run out. de Villiers remained unbeaten with a 17-ball 32. Yadav bowled his most expensive IPL spell ever, leaking 65 runs in four overs.
Delhi never looked in control of the chase, losing wickets regularly. Unmukt Chand top-scored with 41 while Warner batting at No.4 scored just four runs. Jaydev Unadkat took five wickets for 24 runs, showing why he is one of the best-paid Indian bowlers in IPL history. Towards the end, Pathan and Morne Morkel almost pulled it off, but the South African was dismissal ended any hopes of a win. RCB won the match by four runs, their second win over Delhi in the 2013 season.
Performances that stood out
Gayle’s big hundred (2012)
The Feroz Shah Kotla was hit by a Gaylestorm in 2012. Gayle punished every bowler as carried his bat through the inning with an unbeaten 128 from 62 deliveries. His century featured seven fours and 13 humongous sixes. The self-proclaimed Universe Boss had support from the other end as Kohli scored an unbeaten 73 helping RCB post 215/1 in the first inning. The visitors won the match by 21 runs with Zaheer and Kerala bowler Prasanth Parameswaran taking three wickets each.
Total team effort to demolish Delhi (2015)
Delhi Daredevils were humbled by RCB’s bowling attack at home. Jadhav top-scored with 33 while eight batsmen registered single-digit scores. Australian quick Mitchell Starc took three wickets, Varun Aaron and David Weise took two wickets. Domestic players Harshal Patel and Iqbal Abdulla picked a wicket each. Delhi were bundled out for 95, their lowest score against RCB. The target was chased down easily, with 57 balls to spare.
Quin’ton’ blows RCB away (2016)
South African wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock opened the innings in the 192-run chase. Despite the wickets of Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson falling, de Kock dominated most of the RCB bowlers. The Proteas wicketkeeper-batsman scored 108 runs from 51 deliveries, his maiden IPL century. His quickfire century helped Delhi win the match by seven wickets with five balls to spare.
Unstoppable ABD! (2018)
Delhi would have backed themselves to win the match after Iyer’s 52 and Pant’s 48-ball 85 took them to 174/5. The wickets of RCB openers de Kock and Manan Vohra in the powerplays overs followed by Kohli’s struggle to time the ball only made that seem more likely. But de Villiers seemed unstoppable on that day. He demolished the Delhi bowling lineup with an unbeaten 39-ball 90, helping RCB chase down the total with two overs to spare. De Villiers smashed 10 fours and five sixes.
Rabada slays giants (2019)
The South African speedster made his presence felt by ending a potential Kohli-ABD partnership. Rabada came back later and removed Kohli, Akashdeep Nath and Pawan Negi in a single over to end RCB’s plans to accelerate in the death overs. He took four wickets for 21 runs as RCB managed just 149/8. Delhi Capitals chased it down with seven balls to spare.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines