Rishabh Pant showed tremendous character to come back from a personal tragedy of losing his father, as well as great technique to give Delhi Daredevils (DD) hope till the end to win against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at Chinnaswamy Stadium on Saturday. His 57 off 36 balls eventually went in vain after DD were dismissed for 142 in pursuit of RCB's 157/8, but what stood out was Pant's courage. Delhi's captain Zaheer Khan rued that his side failed to chase down a target and said they would have done it eight out of 10 times.
"He (Pant) played well, and just needed support at the other end. Pant showed a lot of courage, he has undergone personal trauma, we are all with him."
Zaheer, a former India strike bowler, attributed his side's 15-run loss to lack of partnership by his batsmen. Chasing 158 for a win, Delhi ended at 142 for 9 in their allotted 20 overs.
"Eight out of ten times we would have got this total. We could not get the partnerships going. The wicket was very good for batting. We were going at a good rate but we just did not have partnerships," Zaheer said after the match.
Zaheer said the wicket was a bit on the drier side and that was one of the reasons 158 was gettable.
"We have a good balance of fast bowlers and spinners. We also have Jayant sitting on the sidelines. It is just the beginning of the tournament."
RCB captain Shane Watson said, "It was a great win. To get to that score Kedar did really well. We stepped it up from the first game with the ball and in the field. Kedar got the momentum going."
Asked about choosing Pawan Negi to bowl the final over, which resulted to Pant's dismissal, Watson said, "My gut feeling went with Negi. Pant had not seen him all night.
"Negi did it against his old team. Chahal has done it for RCB for a long time, he has done it for India as well."
Man of the Match Jadhav said, "At the age of 15, I was improvising. Once I got power, I started hitting big shots. I keep all the options open and just react to the ball.
"I look short but I work hard on my fitness in the gym. When two of your top players are not playing, you need to take responsibility" he said referring to the absence of captain Virat Kohli and South African A B de Villiers.
(With PTI inputs)