Ravichandran Ashwin    AFP
Ravichandran Ashwin AFP

Ravichandran Ashwin in his maiden captaincy match led Punjab to victory in the opening match of the Indian T20 League 2018 against Delhi by 6 wickets. They did a decent job with the ball restricting Delhi to 166 picking up seven wickets. In the second innings KL Rahul created history by scoring the fastest 50 of the tournament. Punjab won the match in the 19th over with Marcus Stoinis hitting the winning runs.

In the post match presentation Ashwin admitted that he felt the pressure during the toss.

“There is lesser pressure now. I had a bit of nerves going in for the toss. Feeling a bit relieved now. I had some elaborate plans going in the practice games.”

Rahul completed his half century in only 14 balls with a strike rate of 340. Ashwin in his first match showcased liking for spin bowling as seven overs off the first 10 were bowled by spinners.

“KL Rahul and the other guys helped me execute them. It doesn’t matter if it’s a left-arm spinner to a left-hander or a right-arm spinner for a right hander. I think it’s just the perception that one has and I would like to think my best bowlers are the best bowlers and if they get hit, so be it, we will try and chase it down.”

“That’s the thought process. I wanted a lot of guys to have a good hit and we batted well today.”

With the win Delhi also recorded their sixth consecutive defeat opening game of the tournament. Rahul was rewarded the Man of the Match for obvious reasons.