Delhi Capitals on Sunday pulled off one of the most breathtaking heists of all time. Every time they looked to falter and end up with an embarrassing figure, someway someone pulled things back in order. When Mayank Agarwal single-handedly dragged Kings XI Punjab from brink of an embarrassing defeat in their IPL 2020 opener at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday to realising an impressive win, Marcus Stoinis pulled things back with the same sheer brilliance he had revived Delhi's faltering innings with the bat, to enforce a Super Over. And then, KXIP incurred a disastrous Super Over with Kagiso Rabada doing his magic, requiring only three balls to end their struggle. Delhi required only two balls to get over the line and hand themselves an astounding escape. (FULL SCORECARD)
KXIP were looking down the barrel with half of the side back in the pavilion before Mayank's 89 off 60 balls took them to 157. He emerged an unlikely batting hero, bringing Punjab back from no where. He, though, was dismissed when only one run was needed off the last ball of the innings but Chris Jordan could not score the final run, giving Stoinis his wicket and the match was tied. In Punjab's chase skipper KL Rahul (21) was first to go and then India spinner R Ashwin sent back Karun Nair (1) and Nicholas Pooran (0) in space of five balls.
True to his reputation, Agarwal held the one end but Punjab needed Glenn Maxwell to fire, which did not happen as he could add only one run to his and team's total.
Half the batsmen back in the pavilion and no big-hitting batsman left in the line up, Agarwal's heroic batting kept the game alive. He hit seven fours and four sixes.
Earlier in the evening, Stoinis single-handedly uplifted Delhi from 100 for six after 17 overs to 157 for eight at the end of the 20th over. Delhi added 57 runs more in their final three overs at a rate of 19 runs per over with Stoinis hitting a 20-ball half-century.
Delhi got off to a horrifying start after being put to bat, losing their top three inside the fourth over before Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant revived their team with their scores of 31 and 39 respectively.
Iyer (39) and Pant (31) respected the conditions to raise 73-run stand for the fourth wicket while Stoinis' knock towards the end put Capitals in a psychologically advantageous position.
Iyer launched into Gowtham for a massive six, first of the innings, in the ninth over, taking the run-rate to a modest five-an-over.
Iyer and Pant largely relied on singles to keep the scoreboard moving. Iyer took Gowtham to the cleaners in the 13th over, creaming off 15 runs with two well-measured straight sixes.
Suddenly, Iyer seem to be snatching the momentum and it forced Punjab captain KL Rahul to bring back his best bowler -- Shami, who did not disappoint and got rid of Iyer. Delhi seem to be limping but Stonis rescued them.
(with PTI inputs)