IPL 2022: LSG take a step closer to Play-Offs after defeating DC

IPL 2022: LSG take a step closer to Play-Offs after defeating DC

IPL 2022: LSG take a step closer to Play-Offs after defeating DC
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Lucknow Super Giants slammed Delhi Capitals by six runs on Sunday, putting themselves in a strong position to qualify for IPL play-offs.

Uttar Pradesh left-arm bowler Mohsin Khan had an outstanding bowling effort.

Despite stumbling towards the end of the game, skipper KL Rahul’s 77 off 51 balls and freshly promoted Deepak Hooda’s 52 off 34 balls drove LSG to an impressive 195 for 3.

In reply, Mohsin (4/16 in 4 overs) made breakthroughs just when things seemed to be spiraling out of hand, as Delhi Capitals eventually finished on 189 for 7.

LSG already has 14 points after ten games, and a win in the final four games would guarantee them a playoff berth, with 16 being the magic number in most years.

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Things get even worse for DC from here, as 8 points from nine games means they’ll have to win four of their next five games, which appears to be an uphill climb with their bowling assault, which has been defensive on the majority of times.

To make a match of it, at least two of Rishabh Pant (42 off 24 balls), Mitchell Marsh (37 off 20 balls), and Rovman Powell (35 off 21 balls) needed to score more than 60 runs.

However, Mohsin, whose largely back-of-the-length deliveries produced unsettling bounce, occasionally snuck in a larger blockhole delivery as his victims included David Warner (3), Pant, Powell, and Shardul Thakur.

Mohsin’s cricketing smarts were on display as he set up Pant by bowling short and wide, forcing DC skipper to reach for the deliveries.

Pant, frustrated by his lack of success, pre-empted another short delivery that would have allowed him to play the pull-shot, only to find one dipping into blockhole and yorking himself.

After Pant was out, it was left to Powell, who was also snuffed out by a short delivery that he couldn’t clear, therefore destroying Delhi’s hopes of a win, despite the efforts of Axar Patel and Kuldeep Yadav.

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Earlier, Rahul anchored the innings with a well-crafted 77 in the company of immaculate Deepak Hooda, but despite managing a difficult 195 for 3, LSG were unable to fully grasp the initiative.

Despite the duo’s foundation, the last five overs surrendered 50 runs, owing partly to Marcus Stoinis’ (17 no off 16 balls) inability to connect the big smashes.

Rahul and Hooda (52 off 34 balls) scored 95 runs for the second wicket, but more crucially, they neutralised the DC spin attack, putting Kuldeep Yadav (0/29 in 3 overs), Lalit Yadav (0/16 in 1 over), and partially Axar (0/25 in 4 overs) to work.

Hooda hit six boundaries, largely peppering the off-side cordon, and a stunning six over deep mid-wicket in his third half-ton of the season, while Rahul had four fours and five sixes in his 51-ball innings.

While Shardul (3/40 in 4 overs) had the best numbers for DC, he didn’t actually pose a threat to the batters, and Chetan Sakariya (0/44 in 4 overs) sprayed it all over and was taken to the cleaners, especially by the LSG captain.

When Rahul was trying to play himself in, he didn’t always appear smooth, but after he was able to execute the huge hits, he looked like a whole different player.

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The floodgates were opened in the fourth over by off-spinner Lalit.

In an over that yielded 16 runs, Rahul hit an inside out chip over cover for a six, threw one over ’45’ for a boundary, and Quinton de Kock hammered one through covers.

De Kock took a suicidal shot just when it appeared he was regaining his footing. He mistimed a short, wide delivery from Shardul, allowing Lalit to collect the ball at extra cover.

On the day, Rahul and Hooda’s footwork was outstanding, as they did not allow Kuldeep to settle into a certain length.

In the first over, Rahul smashed an off-drive and Hooda followed it up with a cover-drive, prompting the left-arm wrist spinner to slow down his deliveries.

Rahul was at his inventive best when he played the reverse lap-scoop over short third man off Mustafizur Rahaman after Hooda offered Thakur a return catch.

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Lalit finally grabbed him at deep point, perfectly timing his jump off Thakur delivery.

 

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