At various stages of Delhi Daredevils' chase of Royal Challengers Bangalore's 183 for 4 in the Pepsi IPL clash in New Delhi on Friday (May 10) night, it appeared as if Virat Kohli's 99 might go in vain.
However, a young man answering to the name of Jaydev Unadkat brought Bangalore back into the reckoning for a playoff berth, picking up his first five-wicket haul and successfully defending 19 in the final over as Delhi, spirited and spunky, were forced to settle for a four-run defeat.
Unadkat, 21, finished with 5 for 25 from his four overs to walk away with the Man of the Match award. "Obviously, it's very special," the left-arm seamer from Saurashtra, who has played one Test, said. "It was a very important game from the view of the points table as well. We had to win this game to boost the confidence of our team and I am really happy to have contributed on my side."
Bangalore remained fourth on the points table with 16 points from 13 games, but this was only their second win in seven attempts on the road. That was made possible by Unadkat holding his nerve in the last over, with Irfan Pathan and Morne Morkel threatening to unleash an upset of stunning proportions.
"I was just trying to stick to our plans," said Unadkat, who went for 14 and picked up Morkel's wicket off the penultimate delivery. "I was very, very clear in my mind on what to bowl and what the next ball should be and not worry too much about what the outcome will be. They needed 19 runs, so I probably had to bowl three good balls and that was what was going through my mind - that if the next ball is a good one, then it will build pressure on the batsmen. I am happy that I did well in the last over."
Unadkat began his evening with a wicket off his first delivery, Mahela Jayawardena, and went on to the add the scalps of Virender Sehwag, Unmukt Chand and Kedar Jadhav before signing off with Morkel's scalp. Even so, he said he had been apprehensive of getting a start in this year's IPL, where he now has 12 wickets from 10 games.
"I was very very, apprehensive, I would say," he admitted. "We have a lot of good Indian fast bowlers in our team, apart from Zaheer (Khan) bhai and RP (Singh) bhai. There are many talented young fast bowlers in our team who have done well in domestic cricket who are sitting out. I have got my chance and I have worked hard for it. I would thank the coach and the captain for believing in me and Zaheer bhai as well. He has been guiding me from the first match, he has been telling me how to bowl on different wickets. It has been good for me to be in the same side as all the other senior guys."
Unadkat, though, was candid enough to acknowledge that Bangalore had to work both on their bowling and their fielding. "We could have done better than what we did with the ball but at the same time, it was a small ground and the outfield was quick as well," he said. "The boundaries were just coming in the middle overs, we could have stopped them a bit. We need to work on our bowling obviously. We will try and sort it out in the next match and do better than this."
Normally a brilliant fielding side, Bangalore slipped somewhat on Friday, conceding several easy runs under no great pressure. "RCB is one of the best fielding sides in the IPL. We know that and everyone else knows that too," Unadkat said. "We are very quick across the field and we have done really well in the field in the last few matches. But it happens sometimes, today the diving saves didn't go our way and they went for boundaries. But we will work on our fielding and come back as the strong fielding side that we are."