Published: Sun, May 14, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Supergiant's IPL playoff place delayed by loss to Daredevils

Karun Nair's 45-ball 64, as well as quickfire contributions from Rishabh Pant (36) and Marlon Samuels (27), helped Delhi to a total of 168-8.

Delhi are already out of reckoning and they are now at sixth with 12 points from 13 matches.

Supergiant are now on 16 points from 13 games with a net run-rate -0.083 while Kings XI Punjab are on 14 points from equal number of matches but have a comparatively better run-rate of +0.296.

Glenn Maxwell's Kings will have plenty of reasons to feel confident going into the game.

Not realising that he was in danger, Dhoni opted to concentrate more on whether his partner would make the crease but Shami had other intentions as he aimed directly at the non-striker's end to send Dhoni back to the pavilion.

Set 169 to win, Pune got off to a terrible start as Ajinkya Rahane was bowled first ball by Zaheer Khan (2-25), while fellow opener Rahul Tripathi (7) also fell cheaply.

Ben Stokes (33, 35b, 3x4, 2x6) took over the mantle of pushing the run rate along but perished in the deep off Shami.

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Stokes looked like he might do it as well, with the left-hander putting on a nice partnership with Tiwary, with DD doing themselves no favours by dropping the latter twice. In a rare display of poor running between the wickets, Dhoni was caught well short off the mark by Mohammed Shami.

His first boundary. Even before Washington Sundar delivered a non-turning offbreak outside off, Nair jumped across, got inside the line and shovel-swept the ball in the air between square leg and short fine leg.

The man that replaced Stokes in the middle, however, was the man who knows a thing or two about finishing a game off.

In the very last ball of the first over, Sanju Samson was brilliantly runout by Stokes to reduce the home side to 3/1.

Maxwell would be hoping that he, along with the overseas specialists Martin Guptill and Shaun Marsh will continue to wield the long handle and then hope for the all-Indian pace attack, led by the two Sharmas - Sandeep and Mohit - to restrict the opposition batsmen in crunch situations. They needed 43 runs from 24 balls with Tiwary and MS Dhoni in a fifth-wicket stand but Dhoni was run out for 5 and the visitors were unable to strike a single boundary for 22 balls until the last over started. 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 M S Dhoni.

Zaheer Khan and Mohammed Shami took two wickets apiece while Shahbaz Nadeem and Pat Cummins got one each.

Rising Pune Supergiant batsman Manoj Tiwary has taken "complete blame" for not finishing the game for his team against Delhi Daredevils on Friday night, which means they can still miss out on a playoff spot.

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