Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Blistering Batting Seals 67-Run Victory Over Delhi Capitals

Head pulled Lalit Yadav for back-to-back backfoot sixes, before cutting hard and being helped by a misfield from Anrich Nortje to get a four, with Abhishek lofting inside-out for another boundary as 21 runs came off the second over…reports Asian Lite News

Sunrisers Hyderabad continued to set lofty standards of ultra-attacking batting in IPL 2024 as Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma brought an out-of-the-world hurricane of dazzling stroke-play to set the base for a 67-run win over Delhi Capitals at the Arun Jaitley Stadium on Saturday.

On a placid pitch, Head (82 off 39 balls) and Abhishek (46 off 12 balls) left everyone in the stands breathless and speechless with their flurry of impeccable strokeplay and establishing multiple records for fun to help SRH make 125-0 in power-play, thus setting a new record for the highest power-play score in T20 cricket, including in the IPL.

After being hammered in power-play, Kuldeep Yadav (4-55) and Axar Patel (1-29) helped DC come back in the match as SRH went from 131/0 to 151/4. Handy contributions from Shabhaz Ahmed (59 not out off 29 balls) and Nitish Kumar Reddy (37 off 27 balls) ensured SRH posted a massive total yet again, while hitting 22 sixes and equalling their own record of most sixes hit in an IPL match.

In reply, Natarajan fired his yorkers well to pick a brilliant 4-19 as DC were bowled out for 199, with SRH now jumping to second place in points table. Their lone bright spot was young Jake Fraser-McGurk hitting fastest fifty of the season in 15 balls. Pushed into batting first, Head’s onslaught began by smashing a six and two fours on Khaleel Ahmed’s short balls, before Abhishek clipped one for another boundary in a 19-run opening over.

Head pulled Lalit Yadav for back-to-back backfoot sixes, before cutting hard and being helped by a misfield from Anrich Nortje to get a four, with Abhishek lofting inside-out for another boundary as 21 runs came off the second over.

Nortje was next to come in firing line, as Head hit him cleanly for four boundaries, before getting his fifty in just 16 balls, by whipping over deep mid-wicket for six, as 22 runs came off third over. It was also the third time Head reached half-century in power-play of IPL 2024, also the joint-fastest fifty by an SRH batter in IPL.

Abhishek pulled and smacked Lalit for two sixes, before Head slapped him down the ground for third six of the fourth over. Abhishek greeted Kuldeep with loft and pull to hit a brace of sixes, before ending the over by dancing down the pitch to hit another maximum, as SRH crossed 100 in just five overs, also the fastest century by a team in T20s.

Head smacked Mukesh Kumar four straight boundaries, before ending the powerplay with a loft over long-off for six as SRH made 125/0, setting new record for highest-ever score in power-play of T20s. The carnage seemed to have no stopping once Abhishek lofted Kuldeep on the first ball post power-play.

But after that, the script flipped in favour of DC. Abhishek went for a drive off Kuldeep, but couldn’t keep it down and Axar made a dive at extra cover to take a sharp catch. One brought two for Kuldeep as Aiden Markram hit straight to Axar again.

Despite Klaasen smacking him for two sixes down the ground and over long-on, Kuldeep bounced back by having Head, who didn’t get much strike after power-play, heave to a running long-on, and dismiss him for 89 off 32 balls. Axar further pulled DC back in the match by castling Klaasen.

Nitish dazzled with a picture-perfect cover-drive off Khaleel and collectively hit four more pleasing boundaries with Shahbaz as SRH crossed 200 in 14.5 overs. Reddy would again dazzle with a reverse-scoop off Kuldeep for six, before holing out to long-on, giving the spinner incredible figures of 4-55.

Shahbaz swung cleanly to hit Khaleel for back-to-back sixes, while Samad also took a maximum off him as 20 runs came off the 19th over for SRH to raise their 250 for the third time in this season. Shahbaz then hit a four and six on last two balls of the innings to get his maiden IPL fifty, as SRH’s batting carnage finally ended.

Impact player Prithvi Shaw began DC’s chase by smashing Washington Sundar for four boundaries on first four balls. But Sundar had the last laugh as Shaw miscued a loft to cover. David Warner didn’t do much as a leading edge off Bhuvneshwar Kumar was caught by a diving Pat Cummins at mid-off.

Fraser-McGurk brought out his clean bat swing by whacking Sundar for three sixes and as many fours in the third over to collect 30 runs. With Abishek Porel hitting three boundaries from the other end, Fraser-McGurk backed away to drill Pat Cummins for four and then got down on one knee to hit a lofted drive over mid-on for six as 20 runs came off the fifth over.

After amassing 88/2 in power-play, Fraser-McGurk smashed a 15-ball fifty, also the fastest half-century by a DC batter in IPL, by launching a six over long-on off Mayank Markande. He would smoke two more sixes over long-off before miscuing a slog to point and fall for 18-ball 65, with the crowd giving him a standing ovation.

Porel launched a stunning assault against Shahbaz Ahmed, picking the lengths well to hit three fours and a six as 22 runs came off the eighth over. But Porel missed a wide delivery from Markande and was stumped for 22-ball 42.

Rishabh Pant got a rousing reception from his home crowd and he didn’t disappoint them by producing two dazzling flicks fetching him boundaries off Bhuvneshwar. But he struggled to find fluency big time, especially being beaten on pace by Cummins, which meant DC crumbled under pressure.

Tristan Stubbs succumbed to it by pulling to mid-wicket off Nitish Reddy, followed by Lalit’s leg-stump being sent on a cartwheel ride by Natarajan, who took out Axar, Nortje and Kuldeep in the 19th over. Though Pant collected four more boundaries, it was too late for DC to prevent themselves from slumping to their fifth defeat of the competition.

Brief Scores: Sunrisers Hyderabad 266/7 in 20 overs (Travis Head 89, Shahbaz Ahmed 59 not out; Kuldeep Yadav 4-55, Axar Patel 1-29) beat Delhi Capitals 199 in 19.1 overs (Jake Fraser-McGurk 65, Rishabh Pant 44; T Natarajan 4-19, Nitish Reddy 2-19) by 67 runs

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