A maiden IPL fifty from Ravichandran Ashwin while Devdutt Padikkal chipped in with 48 carrying Rajasthan Royals to 160/6 against Delhi Capitals at the DY Patil Stadium on Wednesday.
For Delhi, Chetan Sakariya was the standout with the ball, picking 2/23 while Mitchell Marsh and Anrich Nortje took two wickets each.
Pushed into batting first, Jos Buttler had been kept quiet by Sakariya's left-arm pace. Eventually, Sakariya got Buttler out when he got one to move one full ball in, with the Englishman hitting straight to mid-on off a thick inner edge.
Ashwin's promotion to three as a pinch hitter began to work well when he carted a brace of fours off Shardul Thakur; a neat whip over mid-wicket was followed by a crisp punch through extra cover.
Ashwin further took a four with a cut through point and followed it up by dancing down the pitch to hit a six off Axar Patel in the final over of the powerplay.
Yashasvi Jaiswal couldn't repeat the heroics of his 68 against Punjab Kings, falling to Mitchell Marsh while trying to hook over the long boundary but found deep square leg instead. But Padikkal welcomed Marsh with a square drive through off-side and took another four with a pull through fine leg.
Padikkal took a liking to Axar's left-arm spin, striking him for consecutive sixes through a switch-hit and a smack down the ground. Ashwin, who has been stuck till then, danced down the pitch to hit Kuldeep Yadav for six over long-off and then took a four off Sakariya with a cheeky ramp over keeper's head.
After reaching his maiden IPL fifty in 37 balls, Ashwin miscued to mid-off but did his job to perfection. Padikkal continued to take runs off Marsh, taking successive fours - with a tickle through fine leg and slice over in-field at short third man.
But wickets began to fall from other end as Sanju Samson miscued a cross-batted heave to mid-wicket off Anrich Nortje while Riyan Parag was undone by Sakariya's back of the hand slower ball and mistimed to long-on.
Nortje returned to take out Padikkal with an off-cutter which the left-hander could slice in the air and was pouched safely by deep point running in, as Delhi took 53/4 in last six overs to restrict Rajasthan to a par score.
Brief Scores: Rajasthan Royals 160/6 in 20 overs (Ravichandran Ashwin 50, Devdutt Padikkal 48; Chetan Sakariya 2/23, Mitchell Marsh 2/25) against Delhi Capitals