Delhi’s over-reliance on their openers was put to test in the clash against Rajasthan Royals, where the Royals removed the openers early on in the game. However, the partnership between Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant kick-started things for the Capitals, which was then carried forward by the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Lalit Yadav and Axar Patel to take Delhi to 154/6.
In the absence of Evin Lewis, the onus was on Liam Livingstone to get the Royals off to a flier. However, Delhi Capitals, who possess one of the best bowling attacks in the competition made the chase look daunting. The pace troika of Anrich Nortje, Avesh Khan and Kagiso Rabada ensured that the Royals were never in the run-chase with some immaculate bowling.
Nortje finished with figures of 2/18, Avesh with 1/29 and Rabada with 1/26 as Delhi wrapped up a 33-run win over the Royals to cement their place in the top-two. Delhi skipper Pant hailed the bowling unit, calling them as one of the best in the tournament.
"[On his bowling attack] If not the best, it is one of the best. But we like to take it as one match at a time. There's a fair bit of planning, as a team we plan according to the batters, and execute according to those plans. Ashwin likes to set his own fields. I am happy with my form,” Pant stated.
“As long as the team is winning, I am happy. [On playing with Shreyas] We have batted together for a long time. He bats 3 and I bat 5 normally. So that helps."
Shreyas Iyer, who returned after recovering from his injury quickly turned the tables with his batting display. After scoring an unbeaten 47 against Sunrisers, Iyer piled up another impressive 43 in Delhi’s win over Rajasthan. After winning the Player of the Match award, Iyer insisted that he had time his shots on the behaviour of the pitch.
"Just decided to see how the wicket was playing and then take it from there and look to take on the spinners later. Prithvi and Shikhar are attacking players. Rishabh and I have been playing together for the last five years. It is good fun because he takes on bowlers as soon as he comes on,” Shreyas said.
Iyer also revealed that the last five months (recovering from the injury) has been a hectic period for him. But his batting displays against Sunrisers and Rajasthan only show that the right-hander is back in amazing form, especially after losing his place in the Indian side.
“[On returning from injury] The last five months have been hectic, but now I am feeling amazing. I have a close-knit family and friends. They motivated me, and once rehab started, my power came back quicker than I thought. I love to take on the bowlers."