IPL 2024: Badoni’S Brilliant Fifty Lifts Lucknow To 167/7 Against Delhi Capitals


(MENAFN- IANS) Lucknow, April 12 (IANS) Spinner Kuldeep Yadav claimed three wickets on his return from injury, but Ayush Badoni's brilliant unbeaten half-century lifted hosts Lucknow Super Giants to 167/7 in 20 overs against Delhi Capitals in Match 26 of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 at the Ekana Cricket Stadium here on Friday.

Batting first on the central spongy pitch, Lucknow Super Giants opener Quinton de Kock started and finished the first over from Khaleel Ahmed with a boundary. Khaleel has been Capitals' best bowler so far this season but his first ball was short and wide, to be carved away over the leaping gully fielder. Though the bowler straightened up his line in response to the boundary, de Kock managed to find a thick inside edge for four more.

De Kock missed a big swing across the line of Khaleel's second over and the finger went up. The ball was heading toward the leg and de Kock went for the DRS - but ball-tracking had it shaving the leg stump. The DRS result came in for the umpire's call, and de Kock departed after scoring 19 off 13 deliveries.

Delhi Capitals needed that breakthrough after a fast start by the LSG openers. With his eighth wicket in this IPL season, Khaleel became the joint fourth in the wicket-takers list.

Khaleel, bowling his third over of the Power-play, got the second wicket for Delhi as Devdutt Padikkal was pinned in front of middle and leg for his fifth consecutive single-figure score since joining LSG. He thought about reviewing the decision but there was much less doubt about this call, and in the end, he just headed to the dressing room. Super Giants were 42 for 2 in the fifth over.

Skipper KL Rahul, on the other end, showed intent after facing criticism for his approach in the previous matches. He looked in sparkling touch and his first boundary was a flat six off Khaleel, flayed over cover. He then greeted Mukesh Kumar's arrival into the attack for the final over of the Power-play with back-to-back fours, the second a smooth on-the-walk drive through extra cover. LSG were 57/2 after six overs, ahead of the pace they set against Titans in their previous match. With 30 off 14 balls, this was Rahul's joint-best Power-play score for the Super Giants.

Kuldeep Yadav missed the Capitals' last three matches due to an injury, but he was back with a bang. The wrist-spinner picked up Marcus Stoinis (8) on his third ball, a wrong'un sliced tamely towards backward point, and then followed it up by removing Nicholas Pooran, LSG's in-form batter, for zero with one that ripped back to uproot the off-stump. Not only did Kuldeep put the brakes on the home side's run surge and quietened the crowd, he also completely nobbled the stump.

Rahul was batting beautifully on 39 from 21 when he attempted to cut one going across him and feathered an edge behind off Kuldeep. It wasn't given out on the field, but Rishabh Pant quickly reviewed it and Rahul departed after scoring 39. LSG were 80/5 at the end of 10 overs, having brought Deepak Hooda in as their Impact Substitute replacing de Kock.

Kuldeep Yadav ended his spell with figures of 3-20 in his four overs.

No boundaries came in almost the next five overs for the host as Ayush Badoni and Krunal Pandya rotated the strike and kept the scoreboard ticking. LSG were six down after the fall of Pandya (3) off the final ball of the 13th over and the second over of Mukesh Kumar. Kuldeep started the rot with two in two balls and the home side since then lost 5 for 28 during the middle overs of their innings.

The only plus point that LSG had in their favour was they never lost when defending a target of 160-plus and Badoni was looking good with his bat. He had earlier smoked Mukesh Kumar for back-to-back boundaries in his second over.

With the spinners bowled out and Khaleel Ahmed returning for the 18th over, Badoni decided it was time to go after the bowling. The first ball of the over was short and smoked over midwicket for six. Arshad Khan then muscled four more down the ground and was dropped by Prithvi Shaw from the final delivery of the over - the most expensive of the innings, with 15 runs conceded.

Badoni, with a strike rate of 167.70 in death overs, turned the momentum in LSG's favour after back-to-back boundaries -- over sweeper cover and a ramp over deep fine leg -- to take the hosts past 150. Badoni completed his half-century in 31 deliveries on the last ball of the 19th over. He and Arshad Khan added 73 runs in 42 deliveries for the eighth wicket partnership, which propelled host Lucknow Super Giants to 167/7 at the end of 20 overs. It was the highest eighth-wicket partnership in IPL history.

Brief score:

Lucknow Super Giants 167/7 in 20 overs (Ayush Badoni 55 not out, KL Rahul 39; Kuldeep Yadav 3-20, Khaleel Ahmed 2-41) against Delhi Capitals.

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IANS

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