Mitchell Marsh dished out one of his finest all-round performances but it wasn’t enough as Sunrisers Hyderabad returned to winning ways with a comprehensive nine-run win over Delhi Capitals in the IPL here on April 29.
The hard-hitting Australian all-rounder first snapped four wickets and then blasted six maximums in his 39-ball 63-run knock to conjure up hopes of a successful chase but once he was out, things went downhill for the hosts on the sluggish Kotla track.
Batting first, Abhishek Sharma slammed a 36-ball 67 to set the stage for Heinrich Klaasen, who provided the final flourish with an unbeaten 53 as SRH posted an impressive 197 for 6.
In reply, Delhi lost skipper David Warner for a second-ball duck but Philip Salt (59) and Marsh took the attack to the opposition with a 112-run partnership off just 66 balls to lay a solid ground to their run chase.
With the duo in full flow, 57 runs came in the powerplay as left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein conceded 30 in his three overs.
Marsh clobbered Umran Malik for two maximums and Salt produced two good hits to amass 22 runs off the over, while Abhishek was punished for bowling wrong length with Marsh slamming a four and six.
An incredible caught and bowled effort from Mayank Markande finally broke the partnership with Salt back in the pavilion. Soon, Abhishek got rid of Manish Pandey and when Marsh holed out to Markram off Hosein, it left DC at 125 for 4 in the 14th over.
Needing 69 off 36 balls, SRH tightened the screws to limit DC to 188 for six in 20 overs with Axar Patel scoring 29 off 14 balls.
With the win, SRH snapped their three-match losing streak to remain alive in the competition. They are bow in the eighth spot with six points, while DC stayed at the bottom.
Earlier, back at the top, Abhishek seemed to be batting on a different track, slamming 12 fours and a six, even as the others struggled on the two-paced wicket.
While the southpaw looked in good rhythm, the rest of the top and middle order continued to disappoint, scoring in single digits.
But Klaasen’s 27-ball-knock ensured that momentum is not lost with as many as 62 runs coming off last five overs.
The South African added 53 of 33 balls with Abdul Samad (28 off 21 balls) and 35 off 18 balls with Akeal Hosein (16 off 10 balls) as SRH posted the highest score at the Kotla this season.
For DC, Mitchell Marsh was the best bowler in display, returning with figures of 4-1-27-4, while Axar Patel (1/29) picked up a solitary wicket. Ishant Sharma also got one but he was expensive in his three overs.
The stylish Abhishek was particularly harsh on Ishant Sharma, picking up back-to-back boundaries before pulling him for another four in the midwicket region.
Mayank Agarwal, however, didn’t look comfortable and his misery was ended by Ishant with a well-directed bouncer. Rahul Tripathi sent one from Mukesh Kumar over the keeper for a six before falling to Mitchell Marsh.
Ishant was again on the firing line of Abhishek, who smashed him for four boundaries more in the sixth over as 16 runs came off it, helping SRH to end the powerplay at 62 for 2.
Kuldeep Yadav could have dismissed Abhishek but Anrich Nortje spilled a regulation catch at the boundary and the opener rubbed salt on the bowler’s wound with a slogsweep for a maximum to bring up his fifty. Abhishek took 25 balls to reach the milestone.
Marsh was rewarded for bowling his cutters and back of length scrambled seam deliveries as he dismissed Markram and Harry Brook in a double wicket maiden over. Sunrisers reached 83 for 4 in 10 overs.
Medium pacer Mukesh Kumar was next taken to the cleaners with Abhishek smashing two fours in the first two balls and Klaasen clobbering him for a four and maximum.
The 11th over yielded 24 runs, taking SRH over the 100-mark in the process.
Abhishek was finally dismissed in the 12th over when he tried to go for a slog off Axar. Klaasen then teed off during the death overs to ensure an above-par score for visitors.