New Delhi, May 6 (IANS) England batter Philip Salt smashed an exceptional half-century (87 off 45) to outshine the fifties from Virat Kohli and Mahipal Lomror and power Delhi Capitals to a dominating seven-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in Match No. 50 of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, here on Saturday.
With this win, Delhi Capitals moved up to the ninth position in the points table with four wins in 10 matches and kept their qualification hopes alive. On the other hand, RCB are in the fifth spot with five wins in 10 games.
Fine fifties by Kohli (55 off 46) and Lomror (54 off 29) propelled RCB to 181/4 in 20 overs. Apart from Kohli and Lomror, skipper Faf du Plessis also played a vital knock to contribute to RCB’s decent total. On the other hand, Mitchell Marsh was the most successful bowler for Delhi Capitals with his superb 2-21.
Chasing a challenging total, openers David Warner and Philip Salt gave Delhi Capitals a flying start. From the very first over, Warner cleared his intent by smashing Siraj for two boundaries while Philip also joined the party and picked crucial boundaries and sixes off Maxwell and Philip to take Delhi to 29/0 after the first three overs.
With both Capitals’ openers batting freely, RCB skipper Du Plessis was forced to bring Wanindu Hasaranga in the 4th over itself but it didn’t yield great results as Warner clubbed the spinner for a six and boundary.
His batting partner Salt then took Siraj to the cleaners by hitting for consecutive 6, 6, 4 which rattled the pacer. Siraj and Salt had a heated discussion at the pitch and umpires and Warner had to intervene to diffuse the situation.
It was Hazlewood, who finally gave RCB the much-needed breakthrough by removing Warner on a slower ball outside off. However, Mitchell Marsh came out swinging hard, picking up a four and a six and taking his to 70/1 — Delhi Capitals’ best Power-play in IPL 2023.
Even after the Power-play, Salt showed no signs of slowing down and made a mockery of the pitch and RCB bowling to get fifty off just 28 balls. On the other hand, Marsh was giving him enough support with his timely boundaries as Delhi Capitals were 115-1 after 10 overs.
All-rounder Harshal Patel, who came in as Impact Player replacing Kedhar Yadav, finally gave RCB a breakthrough by dismissing Mitchell Marsh. Rilee Rossouw was the new batter, joining Salt as Delhi Capitals needed 59 runs in 54 balls.
Meanwhile, Salt was just unstoppable and along with Rossouw, he didn’t let the run rate drop. The England batter was fed some slot balls and he let them go free to carry the momentum. He was dismissed for 87, bowled by Karn Sharma in the 16th over but victory was a mere formality by then.
From there on, Rilee Rossouw (35 off 22) played an impressive knock and along with Axar Patel (8 off 3) took Delhi Capitals over the victory line in 16.4 overs.
Earlier, RCB won the toss and opted to bat first. Openers Faf du Plessis and Virat Kohli gave them a strong start, scoring 51/0 in the Power-play. Both Faf and Kohli were a bit cautious in their approach in the first four overs and RCB were 23/0. However, after accessing the conditions, they decided to free their arms and took Mukesh Kumar and Khaleel Ahmed to the cleaners, scoring 13 and 15 runs respectively in the 5th and 6th over.
Kohli and Faf looked in decent touch and continued to steady the RCB innings. The run-rate didn’t spike up too much on a pitch that is stopping a touch but RCB looked to build a solid base to capitalise on later as Faf and Kohli took them to 79/0 at the end of 10 overs.
Delhi Capitals were desperately searching for a wicket and it was Mitchell Marsh, who ended the 82-run opening wicket stand by removing Du Plessis. In the very next ball, Marsh, who removed Glenn Maxwell for a duck and brought Delhi back in the game.
RCB were 82/2 after 10.4 overs and needed another partnership to keep them ahead in the game. The new batter Mahipal Lomror joined an already set Kohli at the crease and Delhi bowlers were able to keep things under their control for the next few overs.
Just when RCB were showing signs of dipping, Lomror propped them with a few lusty hits, especially against Kuldeep Yadav. On the other hand, Kohli anchored the innings with yet another half-century off 42 balls.
With 126/2 after 15 overs, RCB had the platform to finish strong and Lomror hit Mukesh Kumar for a four to make a move towards that. But Kohli flicked the ball straight to Khaleel, who got both hands to it, then juggled and kept tossing the ball close to his chest before finally clinging on to it at short fine leg.
The designated RCB finisher Dinesh Karthik then joined hands with Lomror, who hit Ishant for two fours and took 11 runs from that over. Khaleel Ahmed gave away 15 in his over as Karthik and Lomror smashed the left-arm pacer for a six and boundary.
Though Mukesh Kumar bowled a fantastic 19th over to concede just 6 runs, he couldn’t prevent Lomror from getting his maiden IPL fifty off 26 balls. Khaleel started the last over of the innings by removing Karthik in his first ball and used his slower ones to perfection and gave just 9 runs to keep RCB to 181/4 in 20 overs.
Royal Challengers Bangalore 181/4 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 55, Mahipal Lomror 54; Mitchell Marsh 2-21) lost to Delhi Capitals 187/3 in 16.4 Overs (Philip Salt 87, Rilee Rossouw 35; Josh Hazlewood 1-29) by 7 wickets.