IPL 2021: AB de Villiers trumps Rishabh Pant-Shimron Hetmyer

Ahmedabad, April 27

AB de Villiers struck a breathtaking unbeaten 75 to power Royal Challengers Bangalore to a thrilling one-run victory over Delhi Capitals in the 22nd match of IPL-14 here tonight.

De Villiers ploughed the Delhi attack for 55 runs off the final 23 balls he faced, including 23 runs in the last over bowled by Marcus Stoinis, to take his team to 171/5.

In the chase, Delhi seemed out of the game at 116/4 in 16 overs, requiring another 56 from only 24 balls. However, Shimron Hetmyer nearly did the job in the company of captain Rishabh Pant (58* off 48 balls) with an unbeaten partnership of 78 runs off only 7.2 overs. Hetmyer, who finished with 53* off 25 balls, signalled the final onslaught with three sixers off Kyle Jamieson in the 18th over. Delhi got 11 off the next over, bowled by Harshal Patel, and Delhi needed 14 off the last over, from Mohammed Siraj.

Siraj managed to keep Pant and Hetmyer to only four runs off the first four balls, and Pant needed to make 10 runs off the final two balls. Pant, however, could manage only two fours and the chase ended in disappointment.

Their fifth win in six matches takes RCB to solo first position with 10 points.

De Villiers on fire

South African star de Villiers’s unbeaten 75 came off 42 deliveries and comprised three fours and five sixes as he took 23 runs (including one wide) in the last over of the innings from Stoinis.

Delhi had done well to pick two early wickets, removing both Devdutt Padikkal (17) and skipper Virat Kohli (12) inside the powerplay. Glenn Maxwell (25) fell soon after, leaving RCB at 60/3. However, de Villiers shared a 54-run partnership with No. 3 Rajat Patidar (31 off 22 balls) and took the fight to the opposition. RCB were looking like they would struggle to get past 160 at 124/4 in 16 overs. However, the last four overs produced 47 runs.

Brief scores: RCB: 171/5 (de Villiers 75*); DC: 170/4 (Pant 58*, Hetmyer 53*; Harshal 2/37). — TNS, Agencies

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