Mumbai: Mitchell Marsh and David Warner anchored the Delhi Capitals to an eight-wicket win over the Rajasthan Royals on Wednesday and kept their team in contention for the Indian Premier League playoffs.
Delhi romped to 161-2 with 11 balls to spare after Rajasthan struggled to reach 160-6 as its captain Sanju Samson lost the toss and was asked to bat first.
Fifth-place Delhi has 12 points and third-place Rajasthan 14 with two league games left.
Marsh was lucky to score 89 and Warner made an unbeaten 52 as the Australian batters shared a 144-run second wicket stand after Trent Boult had removed opener Srikar Bharat off the second ball.
Boult could have made it 2-2, but Rajasthan didn’t go for an lbw referral as the television replay suggested the New Zealand fast bowler’s perfect yorker had hit Marsh’s boot first before the bat.
“I honestly thought I smashed it first so I wasn’t worried,” Marsh said on getting an early reprieve before hitting seven sixes and five fours. “It was lucky as I look guilty when I know I’m gone. I did feel I got away with it.”
Both batters survived Boult’s brilliant three-over spell before dominating the bowlers midway through the innings. Rajasthan held back its key spinner Yuzvendra Chahal until the ninth over but luck continued to favor Delhi.
Jos Buttler couldn’t grab Warner’s difficult running catch at long-off in Chahal’s first over which also saw a sharp turning delivery hitting the leg stump of Warner’s leg stump but the bails didn’t come off the groove.
Both batters cut loose in the death overs and even smashed Boult for 15 runs in his last over. Chahal finally broke the stand when Marsh holed out at short fine leg while top-edging a sweep before Rishabh Pant smashed two sixes against the leg-spinner, who finished with 1-43.
Earlier, Marsh picked up 2-25 and restricted Rajasthan's total despite Ravichandran Ashwin scoring 50 off 38 at No. 3. Run-machine Buttler’s (7) dismissal in the third over pushed back Rajasthan’s bid to score freely in the batting powerplay.
Marsh removed Ashwin in the 15th over while Samson (6) and Riyan Parag (9) missed out as they holed out in the deep while going for big shots in the death overs.