Delhi Daredevils falls short by four runs

Sunrisers Hyderabad recorded its maiden victory in season seven of the Pepsi Indian Premier League at the Dubai Cricket Stadium here on Friday. The southern side successfully defended its 184 for one endeavour, curtailing Delhi Daredevils’ response at 180 for four. On an easy wicket, both sides scored briskly but the Sunrisers prevailed by a slender four-run margin.

When the chase began, few would have foreseen a Sunrisers win. In what appeared to be a common enough occurrence, ex-Deccan Chargers/Sunrisers players seemed to be thriving this season, cases in point being J-P Duminy and Chris Lynn. The latest in the line, Quinton de Kock, hit a purple patch against his former franchise, combining effectively with Murali Vijay to give a rollicking start to the Daredevils’ reply.

Good stand

One short of a 100-run partnership, de Kock hoisted Karn Sharma towards mid-wicket Finch, who made no mistake. Vijay departed soon after, his lofted golf shot off Sammy held by Steyn at long on. There was a lull in the scoring as the leg-spin duet of Amit Mishra and Karn Sharma kept Kevin Pietersen, straining at the leash, quiet.

The Delhi skipper cut loose with a six off Sammy and a boundary off Steyn. He didn’t last long though, held by Sammy off Steyn. His deputy Dinesh Karthik had departed one delivery earlier, smacking the speedster to Lokesh Rahul at mid wicket. The fifth wicket pair of Duminy and Manoj Tiwary couldn’t rustle up the required runs.

Sunrisers opted to bat, the sole change to the side being Naman Ojha’s entry for Irfan Pathan. A third of the Delhi squad was overhauled, Pietersen, de Kock, Wayne Parnell and Laxmi Ratan Shukla stepping in for Nathan Coulter-Nile, Ross Taylor, James Neesham and Mayank Agarwal.

As if it had been bottled up until now, SRH’s batting blossomed, the opening duo of Shikhar Dhawan and Aaron Finch breathing life into the cause.

Dhawan’s short arm pull off Parnell delivery sailed over for six to long leg. So was the square drive that followed it, a repeat of the stroke spilt after some juggling by Manoj Tiwary at backward of point.

The full force of his forearms was missing when Dhawan pulled Nadeem, the top edge taken by Pietersen at short fine leg. The partnership between the Aussie pair of Finch and David Warner prospered, each helping himself to sixes almost at will, Finch signing off with one off Unadkat, deployed over mid-wicket.

Scoreboard

Sunrisers Hyderabad: S. Dhawan c Pietersen b Nadeem 33 (22b, 5x4, 1x6), A. Finch (not out) 88 (53b, 8x4, 4x6), D. Warner (not out) 58 (45b, 3x4, 3x6); Extras (lb-3, w-2): 5; Total (for one wkt. in 20 overs): 184.

Fall of wicket: 1-56 (Dhawan).

Delhi Daredevils bowling: Nadeem 4-0-24-1, Shami 4-0-36-0, Parnell 4-0-38-0, Unadkat 4-0-43-0, Duminy 2-0-19-0, Shukla 2-0-21-0.

Delhi Daredevils: Q. de Kock c Finch b K. Sharma 48 (30b, 6x4, 1x6), M. Vijay c Steyn b Sammy 52 (40b, 7x4, 1x6), K. Pietersen c Sammy b Steyn 16 (17b, 1x 4, 1x6), D. Karthik c Rahul b Steyn 15 (14b, 1x4), J-P. Duminy (not out) 20 (7b, 1x4, 2x6), M. Tiwary (not out) 23 (13b, 2x4, 1x6); Extras (lb-3, w-2, nb-1): 6; Total (for four wkts. in 20 overs) 180.

Fall of wickets: 1-99 (de Kock), 2-103 (Vijay), 3-135 (Karthik), 4-135 (Pietersen).

Sunrisers Hyderabad bowling: Bhuvneshwar 4-0-40-0, Steyn 4-0-33-2, Venugopala 1-0-9-0, K. Sharma 4-0-23-1, Sammy 3-0-34-1, Mishra 4-0-38-0.

Man-of-the-match: Aaron Finch.

SRH won by 4 runs.