Delhi Capitals keep playoff hopes alive by defeating Punjab Kings

Mumbai, May 16 (PTI) Mitchell Marsh’s 63 was followed by a brilliant performance by the bowlers led by Shardul Thakur (4 for 36), Delhi Capitals defeated Punjab Kings by 17 runs in an Indian Premier League match here on Monday. They have kept their hopes of reaching the play-offs after defeating them.

This is Delhi’s seventh win in 13 matches. The team has now moved to the fourth position in the table with 14 points. Punjab Kings have 12 points from 13 matches and the team is on the verge of crashing out of the title race.

Delhi restricted Punjab’s innings to 142 for nine after making 159 for seven.

For Punjab, Jitesh Sharma scored 44 runs in 34 balls with the help of three fours and a six but he did not get any support except Rahul Chahar (25 not out).

Apart from Shardul’s four wickets for Delhi, Akshar Patel and Kuldeep Yadav took two wickets each. Enrich Norkea took a wicket.

Marsh, who scored a half-century for the second consecutive match, hit four fours and three sixes in his 48-ball innings, besides sharing 51 runs with Sarfaraz Khan (32) for the second wicket and 47 runs for the third wicket with Lalit Yadav (24). .

Sarfaraz hit five fours and a six in his 16-ball attack, while Lalit hit a four and a six in his 21-ball knock.

For Punjab, Liam Livingstone took three for 27 in four overs and Arshdeep Singh took three for 37 in four overs. Kagiso Rabada took one wicket for 24 runs in three overs.

Chasing the target, Jonny Bairstow and Shikhar Dhawan gave Punjab Kings a quick start. Bairstow hit a four and a six against Khaleel Ahmed and then hit two fours against Anrique Norcia in the fourth over. The South African bowler, however, bowled the ball at a speed of more than 152 km and got Bairstow caught by Axar. Bairstow scored 28 runs in 15 balls with the help of four fours and a six.

Shikhar and Bhanuka (four) hit a four each against Shardul in the sixth over. Shardul made a great comeback in the same over by dismissing both of them. Dhawan scored 19 runs in 16 balls.

In the next over, Axar Patel dismissed Mayank Agarwal without opening the account, taking Punjab’s score from 53 for one to 55 for three. This was Axar’s 100th wicket in the IPL.

Kuldeep Yadav bowled Harpreet Barad (one run) after stumping Livingstone (3 runs) in the eighth over. Due to this the team lost five wickets within 13 runs.

Rishi Dhawan, who was batting carefully, was bowled by Axar Patel and gave Punjab the seventh success.

After this, Rahul Chahar gave great support to Jitesh Sharma and kept the team in the match. Jitesh continued the struggle by hitting sixes against Khaleel and Shardul. From the other end, Chahar also hit a six and a four against Khaleel in the 17th over.

Shardul got Jitesh and then Rabada (6 runs) in the 18th over and decided Delhi’s victory.

After winning the toss and electing to bowl, Livingstone got Punjab off to a great start by dismissing David Warner (nil) on the first ball.

Marsh, however, took two consecutive sixes against Rabada in the next over and opener Sarfaraz eased the pressure in the third over by hitting sixes and two fours in successive deliveries against Harpreet Brar.

Sarfaraz continued to bat aggressively even after this but Arshdeep walked him in the fifth over. On the next ball, Lalit Yadav also caught Jonny Bairstow but the ball became a no ball.

The Punjab bowlers then reined in Delhi’s run-rate. Marsh hit a six against Arshdeep in the 11th over but in the same over, Lalit Bhanuka was caught by Rajapaksa on his slow delivery.

Delhi completed a century of runs in the 12th over. Rishabh Pant (7 runs) was stumped on the next ball after hitting a six in this over from Livingstone. This bowler got the dangerous Rovman Powell (two runs) caught by Shikhar Dhawan in his next (14th of the innings) over.

Akshar hit a boundary in the 16th over against Livingstone, which was the team’s first boundary in the last 20 balls.

Marsh completed his half-century in 40 balls with a four against Harpreet in the 17th over. He tried to increase the run-rate by hitting two fours against Arshdeep in the next over but in the 19th over, he was caught by Rishi in the course of playing a big shot against Rabada.

Delhi team could not hit a single boundary in the last two overs. Akshar remained unbeaten on 17 off 20 balls.