Sunrisers Hyderabad, thanks to a terrific bowling performance led by left-armer Ashish Nehra on a perfect batting track, drubbed Mumbai Indians by 85 runs in the Indian Premier League at the Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Stadium here on Sunday.
With this win, Sunrisers have 12 points from nine matches and Mumbai 10 from as many games.
Mumbai’s gamble of opting to chase backfired in the PowerPlay itself as Nehra came up with a splendid spell of 2-0-14-3 after the ever-effective Bhuvneshwar Kumar was lucky to get an lbw verdict against opener Parthiv Patel (0) with the sixth ball of the innings.
Nehra struck a big blow when he had Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma play away from his body on the off-stump only to drag the ball on to the stumps.
Soon, the seasoned fast bowler surprised Ambati Rayudu with extra bounce to elicit an edge to the fielder on the circle.
Then, Nehra sent back Jos Buttler forcing another edge off an away-going delivery to be caught by a diving Naman Ojha behind the stumps.
Left-armer Barinder Sran was spot on too, inducing a simple catch from the hard-hitting Krunal Pandya straight to Dhawan at mid-wicket. Soon, Kieron Pollard too departed, leaving the innings in tatters at 49 for six in 8.4 overs.
This, even before Mustafizur Rahman bowled a single ball, and he finished with a creditable three-wicket haul to ensure that there were no heroics at the end.
Earlier, Sunrisers scored a challenging 177 for six riding on captain David Warner’s belligerence (48, 33b, 7x4, 1x 6) and his partner Shikhar Dhawan’s resilience (82 n.o., 57b, 10x4, 1x 6) as the two put on 85 runs for the first wicket off 59 balls.
Warner continued his vintage form coming up with some extravagant strokes on either side of the wicket off both pace and spin.
He hit a huge six over long-on off Harbhajan Singh’s second ball of his first over, and then cut him away to the fence.
However, the wily customer that he is, Harbhajan lured Warner to loft straight to Pollard in the deep.
It was the result of his clever ploy to bowl marginally wide of off-stump to deny Warner the width and freedom to go for the big strokes. Mumbai’s hopes of restricting Sunrisers to a modest score were thwarted by the efficacy of Dhawan and the aggressive intent of Yuvraj Singh (39, 23b, 3x4, 2x6) as the two put on 85 runs for the third wicket off just 49 balls. For Mumbai, ironically, both the fast bowlers Tim Southee and Mitchell McClenaghan failed to provide the breakthroughs and were expensive too.