Delhi Daredevils dealt a huge blow to Rising Pune Supergiant's hopes of a top-two finish in the IPL points table with a 7-run win at Feroz Shah Kotla ground on Friday. Batting first, the home team put a challenging 169 run target thanks to a quickfire fifty by Karun Nair (64), his first in the tournament, after the losing two wickets in first two overs.
Apart from Nair, Rishabh Pant (36) and Marlon Samuels (27) provided valuable contributions for the cause.
It was another wobbly start for Delhi, who lost Sanju Samson and last match's hero Shreyas Iyer to be nine for 2 in third over. Samson was out to a brilliant direct hit by Ben Stokes while Iyer tried to slash a back of length ball off Jaydev Unadkat only to edge it back to Mahnedra Singh Dhoni.
Nair and Pant then got together and took the attack to the opposition. No boundaries were scored in the first three overs but they made up for that by smashing five fours and six in the next three. Both batsmen looked in cracking form.
Chasing the target, Pune fumbled initially as Delhi captain Zaheer Khan scalped Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi. After two early blows, captain Steve Smith (38) and Manoj Tiwary (60) tried to steady the ship.
New inclusion Shahbaz Nadeem managed to remove Smith in the 10th over and after that, the hosts were never in the contest.
(With inputs from PTI, More details awaited)