Delhi soar to second with close win over Mumbai

New Delhi, April 23: An assured bowling performance extended Delhi Daredevils' upswing to three successive matches with a 10-run victory over Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Saturday.

It was the first time since 2012 that Delhi have looged three consecutive wins in the tourment, which helped them jump to second in the standings. Defending champions Mumbai's fourth defeat in six matches meant they are sixth with only four points.

Delhi reached 164/4 powered by Sanju Samson's 60 and showed considerable nerve to restrict Mumbai to 154/7, despite skipper Rohit Sharma's third half IPL half-century (65).

Mumbai didn't get the fancy start they wanted while chasing, due to Parthiv Patel's poor run-judging sense. The diminutive wicket-keeper (1) senselessly called partner Rohit Sharma for a non-existent second run-in and was badly exposed despite a valiant dive to reach the crease.

But skipper Rohit (65 off 48) remained undeterred, striking three fours in the third over, off left-arm spinner Pawan Negi, to boost the run-rate. Delhi skipper Zaheer Khan's ploy of denying batsmen pace for shot-making rebounded as Negi conceded 19 runs in that over.

Zaheer swiftly brought on South African pacer Chris Morris into the attack, but was unlucky as Jean Paul Duminy grassed a stiff catch at slip, when Ambati Rayadu slashed hard at an away going delivery to get an outside edge.

Mumbai reached a healthy 52/1 in the power play overs. But their march was jolted by Amit Mishra's googly, inducing Rayadu (25) to a false drive to get bowled in the ninth over with the score at 62.

Rohit and incoming batsman Krul Pandya kept up momentum to guide Mumbai past 100 runs in the 12th over. Pandya (36 off 17 balls) was the aggressor, lifting Protean leg-spinner for and Zaheer for runs.

But he was run out unexpectedly when by an alert Zaheer, who hit the stumps with a direct hit at the non-striker's end on his bowling follow through.

Rohit remained unfazed by his partner's needless urgency and continued to shape the run chase.

Delhi sensed a chance at 110/4 in 14.3 overs, when Jos Butler was caught plumb in front by Mishra (24/2). The leg spinning combition of Mishra and Imran Tahir dried up the boundaries that left Mumbai needing 42 runs off the last 18 balls.

Zaheer dismissed Kieron Pollard in the last ball of the 19th over with Mumbai still needing 21 runs in six balls. It proved too much in the end and with Rohit's comical run out in the third ball of the last over, Mumbai's chances evaporated.

Earlier, Mumbai won the toss and sent Delhi in. It allowed Delhi to start with aplomb, their in-form South African opener Quinton de Kock, the tourment's only centurion so far, driving two crisp boundaries on the off side of the first two balls of the match from Kiwi Tim Southee.

But he perished in the next over (9 off 7 balls), trying to hoick one across the leg side off another Kiwi Mitchell McCleghan only maging to offer a simple catch at point. The loss of their principal run scorer upset their plans, forcing them to reset.

Right-hand opener Shreyas Iyer tried to break the shackles, bludgeoning a four and a six off McCleghan in the fourth over, guiding Delhi to 41/1 in the power play overs. But just when it seemed he and No.3 batter Sanju Samson were striking a decent partnership, Iyer (19 off 20) perished in a similar fashion to de Kock's, only successful in offering a catch to an onrushing third man.

Delhi lost Karun ir (5 off 5) on top of Iyer's wicket six balls later, reducing them to 54/3 in the eighth. The wily Harbhajan Singh struck in his very first over, inducing a top edge off ir at long leg.

Delhi's scoring rate meandered along at a run-a-ball rate, devoid of any momentum and power hitting.

Samson offered to change that, in the 12th over, with a back-to-back six and four off Harbhajan. He soon brought up his fifty off 40 balls, in the 15th, after guiding his team past the 100-run mark in the previous over.

He and Jean Paul Dumiuny's fifty-run partnership was up in the 15th over too. The duo provided a launch pad to pinch hit in the death overs.

Samson (60) departed soon after, when he was most needed for the crucial late push for runs. McCleghan (2/31) picked up his second wicket after reintroduction to bowling in the 17th over. Samson hit four boundaries and two sixes in his 48-ball knock.

Mumbai pacers Bumrah and McCleghan kept the Delhi batsmen relatively quiet. But Duminy (49 off 31) used all his experience to pull Delhi to 164/4.

Brief scores: Delhi Daredevils (164/4, Sanju Samson 60, J.P. Duminy 49 not out; Mitchell McCleghan 2/31) vs Mumbai Indians (Rohit Sharma 65, Krul Pandya 36; Amit Mishra 2/24). IANS

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