Sanju Samson's Rajasthan Royals are looking to break into the top four, Rishabh Pant's Delhi Capitals are looking to go top of the table. Who'll meet their target?
Capitals alone at the top
Just two boundaries in the final three overs for Samson, who wages a lone battle to end unbeaten on 70. But Lomror's 19 was the only other double-digit score. Nortje dismisses Tewatia for the sixth and last wicket taken in the innings. Royals end well short by 33 runs. Nortje symbolizes the Capitals dominance with the ball on the day taking 2 for 18. Delhi continues to slay all comers in their path. That's it from me today. Stay tuned for the report. I'm Peter Della Penna. Be sure to flip over to coverage of the second half of today's doubleheader as Punjab Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad are about 10 minutes away from the first ball in Sharjah.
Samson stirs fightback
The Royals captain isn't lying down. Though he was scoring at under a run a ball for a large chunk of his innings, a sudden burst of boundaries - four in the space of six deliveries - has taken him to a 39-ball half-century. Royals still have a long way to go though to have any chance of victory. 56 off 18 balls required.
Lottery ticket time
55 for 5, on the stroke of 5 pm local time in Abu Dhabi as Rajasthan continue to crumble in the face of this Delhi demolition crew. Rabada bounces out Mahipal Lomror with a flick straight to deep fine leg. Now a short time late, Riyan Parag decides to hit out or get out and does the latter, slogging over the top of a ball from Axar that skids on to crash into middle stump. Delhi's total looked barely par at the innings break but it's proving to be Everest at the moment for the Royals. Samson continues to hang in after he got a second life thanks to the DRS review he used earlier, but he's quickly running out of partners to be able to do anything meaningful in terms of accelerating the run rate to catch up.
Samson survives, Miller does not
Nortje looks like he may have his second as there's a big ricochet on a bouncer that passes Sanju Samson trying to hook and is give out on field. However, the Royals captain reviews immediately and replays clearly show the ball thudding into his shoulder after passing both bat and glove.
David Miller does not get any sort of reprieve against Ashwin though. Charges him second ball after coming on in the fifth over and only manages to send a stiff breeze back at the bowler as the ball beats his charge and slog. Simple stumping. Royals really floundering in the Powerplay. Capitals showing why they're bunched at the top of the table on equal points with CSK.
Spiky start to the chase!
Two wickets fall in the space of two balls to end the first and open the second over. Liam Livingstone's attempt to swat Avesh Khan over the leg side results in a two edge taken by Pant diving forward on the last ball of the first over. Anrich Nortje then gets a big edge behind off Yashasvi Jaiswal initially given not out but Pant calls for the review immediately and a spike on Ultraedge confirms that Jaiswal's brief innings has come to an end. It's shaping up as a bowler's day all around in Abu Dhabi at the moment.
Six and out for Axar
Axar clears the front leg, and long-on, with a big cross-batted heave to start the 19th. He tries to do it again though and fails, picking out the man on the rope to give Chetan Sakariya a second wicket. It's been a strange innings for Delhi. A lot of starts, but nobody carrying on. However, that is in part due to Rajasthan's discipline throughout.
Mustafizur completes the final over conceding just singles and twos for a total of nine runs. It ends as a boundary-free four overs for him, 2 for 22 emblematic of the collective bowling effort from Rajasthan. They look like they should be favorites to chase down this target of 155.
Hetmyer boundary spree ends
Just when it appeared that the scales were tilted firmly in favor of Rajasthan, Shimron Hetmyer attacks Kartik Tyagi for a trio of boundaries in the 16th over. He starts by flaying Tyagi over extra cover, then powers a straight drive to beat a diving long-on, before finishing the sequence with finesse dabbing through third man with an open face. Vital runs for a Delhi innings that has not been able to sustain any momentum. But into the 17th, Mustafizur returns to snuff out Hetmyer's knock as a wide yorker is stabbed to short third man for 28. Rajasthan have been incredibly disciplined with the ball for much of the innings and the lack of boundary pressure is continuing to pay off.
The lack of early firepower is now hindering Delhi badly as Tewatia foxes Iyer with a ball dragged wider outside off, teasing him marginally out of the crease for a failed swat and a sharp stumping is completed by Samson. Rajasthan firmly in control of this contest at the moment.
Delhi's ex-captain goes downtown in back-to-back overs, first against Rahul Tewatia and then Tabraiz Shamsi driving them down the ground for a pair of sixes. Partnership with Pant is looking solid now past 50. These two are looking unflustered. But have they left their acceleration too late? The pitch is looking easy for batting.... and out of nowhere Mustafizur produces the breakthrough. Change of pace short ball that Pant is through a touch early and drags onto his stumps to end the stand at 62. So no franchise scoring record for the captain today. But he's helped set up a good platform as Hetmyer enters the fray.
The Delhi Capitals captain came into today needing 56 runs to become the franchise's all-time scoring leader. He's off to a modest start today, pulling to the fine leg boundary for his first four. Pant is building a slow but steady partnership with Shreyas Iyer after the loss of both Dhawan and subsequently Prithvi Shaw holing out to mid-off against Chetan Sakariya. Just two boundaries between the pair, but continue to milk singles as they build a platform to launch for something bigger. Honors even at this stage.
Tyagi picks up where he left off
Karthik Tyagi, the final over hero in the dramatic win over Punjab Kings, has made the first breakthrough against Delhi Capitals with his first delivery of the day coming on in the third over of play. Shikhar Dhawan gets a bit too cute trying to dab this and the ball backspins off the ground into the stumps off his pads.
String of overseas stars MIA
Chris Morris, who has underwhelmed especially most recently in Rajasthan's thrilling win over Punjab Kings when he conceded 0 for 47, has been dropped. More surprisingly, Evin Lewis has been left out after his 36 off 21 balls. They are both replaced by the South African pair of David Miller and Tabraiz Shamsi. On the Capitals side, Marcus Stoinis is expectedly left out after picking up a left hamstring issue in their win over Sunrisers. Lalit Yadav takes his spot in the XI as Delhi opts to use only three overseas players today.
Good afternoon, sunny Abu Dhabi!
It's the first doubleheader day of the resumption of this year's IPL. The players so far have been able to take advantage of the sunsets in the UAE but today will be the first genuine daytime scorcher with the first doubleheader day kicking off in Abu Dhabi. Temperatures will be hovering around 35C/97F for today's toasty contest between Delhi Capitals, who can move into sole possession of first place with a win today, and Rajasthan Royals. It was the South African pace duo of Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje who powered the Capitals to a win in their last match with the ball. Can they do it again today?