Former Indian opener Virender Sehwag has mentioned in a light-hearted manner that IPL franchises have been making the best use of his free advice. He cited the example of the Delhi Capitals sending Marcus Stoinis to bat at the top of the order.
Sehwag made this observation while reviewing yesterday’s IPL 2020 Qualifier 2 encounter between the Shreyas Iyer-led side and the Sunrisers Hyderabad in a video shared on his Facebook page.
Virender Sehwag started by pointing out that the Delhi Capitals won the toss and opted to bat first after the massive defeat they suffered in the last match while chasing.
“Shreyas Iyer won the important toss of this crucial match and quietly decided to bat. It seems the bad memories of the chase from the previous match were still fresh in their minds.”
He observed that the Delhi Capitals listened to his advice by sending Stoinis to open along with Shikhar Dhawan.
“Delhi Capitals opted to bat but there was a surprise in store. Just as I had suggested, Marcus Stoinis opened the batting. I am telling you, they are all taking advantage of my free advice.”
The former Delhi Capitals captain highlighted Stoinis’ dropped catch by Jason Holder as a costly miss for the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
“Hyderabad had a great chance to dismiss Stoinis and give Delhi an early jolt. But they got a battering in return as Holder dropped Stoinis when the latter had scored only three runs.”
He reasoned that the Delhi Capitals all-rounder got a burst of confidence after the let-off and took a heavy toll on Holder when he came on to bowl.
“After that, Stoinis’ confidence soared bigger than the Burj Khalifa. He first hit runs off Sandeep Sharma and when Holder came to bowl, he sprinkled salt on his wounds. Delhi Capitals announced their explosive innings by taking 18 runs off Holder’s over.”
The dashing opener observed that Stoinis’ aggressive intent rubbed off on Dhawan, with the southpaw targeting Shahbaz Nadeem in particular.
“Seeing Stoinis play in his carefree style, Shikhar Dhawan also puffed up his chest and played. He made Shahbaz Nadeem his punching bag and kept on hitting him.”
He added that although Rashid Khan got rid of Stoinis, Dhawan kept up the momentum from the other end.
“The score had crossed 80 by the 8th over and Delhi was going ahead at full speed but Rashid Khan came back refreshed in his 2nd over and clean bowled Stoinis. Although Stoinis got out, Dhawan was driving his car on cruise control.”
Sehwag pointed out that Shimron Hetmyer came to the middle in an aggressive mood after Shreyas Iyer had played a rather subdued innings.
“It seems Shreyas Iyer’s batting form has been seized up, so he got out after scoring 20 runs in singles. But Hetmyer, who came after Iyer, had clear intentions.”
He observed that the West Indian made the best use of the chance to get a hit in the middle and took the Delhi Capitals to a huge score in the company of Dhawan.
“He must have thought that he had got a spot in the team with great difficulty and got the chance to bat, so he had to play an impactful innings. He played a bombastic innings along with Dhawan and took Delhi to a score of 189.”
Virender Sehwag on the Delhi Capitals bowling effort
Talking about the Sunrisers Hyderabad run-chase, Virender Sehwag reckoned that the franchise took a punt by sending Priyam Garg as an opener, with the youngster even going after Ravichandran Ashwin.
“Hyderabad needed a good start and they took a chance and sent out the young Priyam Garg to open. He punished Masterji Ashwin in his first over to give them a good start as well.”
The triple centurion in Test cricket pointed out that Kagiso Rabada’s dismissal of David Warner tilted the balance of the match in the Delhi Capitals’ favour.
“But road-roller Rabada, who was quite hungry from the last few matches, dismissed the rock Warner to win 50% of the match there itself.”
He added that Stoinis getting rid of Garg and Manish Pandey almost won the Delhi Capitals the match.
“Stoinis, who had given Delhi a good start with the bat, came back to troll Hyderabad with the ball as well. The match seemed to have slipped out of Hyderabad’s hands after losing two wickets in an over.”
Sehwag observed that Kane Williamson had other ideas, but did not get the required support from Holder on this occasion.
“But Williamson was in the mood but all his partners were making loss-making deals. Even Holder didn’t provide his shoulder for support this time.”
The former Indian captain stated that it was Stoinis’ day, as he got rid of the Kiwi captain to give the Delhi Capitals the edge again.
“51 runs were needed off the last 4 overs. It was almost a match in balance, but the lady luck was smiling on Stoinis yesterday and he dismissed Williamson to shift the balance of the match towards Delhi.”
Virender Sehwag signed off by pointing out that Rabada stifled the resistance provided by Abdul Samad and Rashid Khan to take the Delhi Capitals to their maiden IPL final.
“Samad and Rashid tried but Rabada returned to ruin their day and took Delhi to their first ever IPL final.”
The Delhi Capitals seemed to be marching to victory after Jason Holder was dismissed in the 12th over. Williamson and Samad stitched together a 57-run partnership to raise the Sunrisers Hyderabad’s hopes, but they were unable to take their team across the finishing line.
Published 09 Nov 2020, 15:01 IST