Shreyanka Patil drives the pace on a miserable night for RCB

The offspinner showed his versatility with the ball but it was not enough to take RCB past Capitals

If any picture can capture the agony and joy in one frame, it was the final moments of the match between Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore on Sunday night.

Richa Ghosh had fallen at the non-striker’s end after a long dive. She desired every ounce of strength from her body, but came up inches short. Shreyanka Patil was at the other end of the pitch, the stumps were messed up and the ball was lying nearby. She didn’t want that moment to happen. Both of their heads were buried on the ground, tears were flowing uncontrollably.

Shreyanka Patil

And Capitals players weren’t far from the two — feeling relieved and full of smiles. They were hugging each other, sharing high-fives and jumping with joy. They managed to secure a playoff spot for the second consecutive season with a one-run win, this time against RCB, who is still in contention.

The Capitals faced another thrilling encounter – now twice in two matches. Last time they came up at the wrong end, but not this time, with RCB in command for the last half-hour. So they knew what Ghosh and Patil were going through.

Ghosh’s heroics helped RCB get close after needing 40 runs from 18 balls. He showcased his power and big hitting to score 51 off 29 balls – skills that make him indispensable in India’s T20I set-up as a finisher. RCB getting so close was also due to Patil’s magic early in the evening.

Patil showed why he is highly rated in T20 cricket by taking 4 wickets for 26 runs. When the opposition’s score was more than nine, his economy rate was 6.50 – a commendable achievement in itself.

A minor niggle had ruled him out of RCB’s first two matches of the Delhi leg. According to her captain Smriti Mandhana, she was “struggling to be match fit” for the past few days, and returned to the eleven on Sunday. The match was not played on center wicket, which meant that one square boundary was shorter (46 metres) than the other (63 metres), and when it was brought into the attack the Capitals were 55 for 1 in seven overs. Had taken.

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Patil started out as an offspinner after trying his hand at fast bowling, legspin and wicket-keeping after noticing that there were not a lot of players in the Karnataka Under-14 trials, and one of his strengths from those days was his pace. . Before then, most spinners in the women’s game had focused on slowing down the pace. But Patil’s coach and mentor Arjun Dev explained to her how she could use it effectively.

It is an open secret that Patil is one of the smartest spinners on the Indian circuit. She provided an early glimpse of those smarts with her first wicket, when she varied her pace to catch batsman Meg Lanning with a strike that was second to none. With a short boundary on the off side, he started around the stumps but made a mistake by bowling one outside off at 73 kmph.

Lanning, who came into the game with three consecutive fifties, lofted it over mid-off to pull the first punch. Patil responded by using the pace to her advantage and slashed the next one on a length at 84.7 kmph, while swinging it a touch away. Lanning went back for the pull but missed and was hit on her back leg, near the middle.

Most of Patil’s wickets on the evening were about dangling the carrot with a flying ball before slipping quickly to deceive the batsman. Mandhana always bowled him with long boundaries on the leg side, which made his job a little easier, allowing him to focus on one-upping the batsman. As she did when Jemimah Rodrigues backed away to the off side and was instead caught by a yorker that she failed to understand.

A ball later, Rodrigues tried to move towards off-side to sweep past short fine leg. But Patil slipped on a very full ball, taking her by surprise. Rodriguez could only pull it back onto her stumps. That dismissal helped RCB end the 97-run partnership between Rodrigues and Ellis Capsey for the third wicket.

After this, Patil hit two blows in the last over. Capsy was on 48 and was in an aggressive mood at the start of the over. His first instinct was to charge down the track to attack the spinners, and if not, to simply stand and thrash them up the infield. Keeping up the field on the off side, Capsey stepped back for a length ball which fell outside the off side. But the ball kept coming in and she could not make any contact and was bowled. Patil fired it at a speed of 86.5 km per hour.


After three balls, he dismissed Jess Jonassen out of the crease and had him stumped. Thanks to Patil’s three wickets in two overs, RCB conceded only 38 runs in the last four overs and restricted the Capitals to 181 for 5.

Patil earned special praise from her captain after the game: “Sometimes when you lose, you don’t give it enough credit, but Shreyanka’s last two overs were brilliant, the way she bowled, especially the last over. ,” Mandhana said. “She wasn’t taken out, but she had a little problem. She was a player of her level, there was no option to take her out. She showed very good character after her mistake.”

Patil was inconsolable after the finale. Even when she shook hands with the players and went towards the dugout, her tears did not stop. Patil and RCB still face a tough wait for playoff qualification.

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