The Indian Premier League’s location may have changed but Sunrisers Hyderabad’s fate continued to be the same as they succumbed to a 8-wicket defeat at the hands of Delhi Capitals in Dubai, in their first match of IPL 2021’s UAE phase. Winning the toss Kane Williamson opted to bat but it backfired as David Warner’s struggle with the bat continued as he departed for a duck. When it looked like Kane Williamson and Wriddhiman Saha steadied the ship for SRH, the Indian wicket-keeper gave away his wicket to Kagiso Rabada.
“We didn’t start well, didn’t register a decent partnership but never got any momentum, some good scores in the back-end, but pretty much 25-30 runs short," Kane Williamson said after the match.
“They got us into hard positions, perhaps if we hadn’t lost early wickets, we could have done differently, but Delhi were outstanding and played some smart cricket," he added.
The second-wicket 29-run partnership between Williamson-Saha and the third-wicket 31-run partnership between Manish Pandey and the SRH captain were the only two notable partnership in the match by SRH batters. The only other 20-plus run partnership was the one between Rashid Khan and Abdul Samad as Delhi Capitals bowlers combined forces to keep Sunrisers Hyderabad at a below-par 134/9 in 20 overs.
Praising Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje, Kane Williamson said, “They were excellent, they are both quality internationals, two of the best fast bowlers going around at the moment and they put us under pressure."
Shikhar Dhawan too was in all praise of his team’s express bowlers, he said, “Rabada and Nortje are our gun bowlers. Rabada always gets us the wicket. Nortje has great pace and his game has improved too, so they are troubling the batsmen. "
Chasing 135, Delhi got off to a decent start but lost Prithvi Shaw’s wicket in the third over. When it looked like SRH could make their way back into the match, Shikhar Dhawan and Shreyas Iyer stitched an important partnership to take control of the match, later on Rishabh joined Shreyas and the duo took DC over the line.
“We did bowl well, we have defended modest scores in the past, but it wasn’t to be today which was a bit of a shame. It’s been a difficult campaign so far, but we need to enjoy our cricket and don’t put ourselves under pressure," the SRH captain said.
With this win, Delhi move to the top of the points table with 14 points to their name from 9 matches, while Sunrisers Hyderabad remain bottom of the pile with two points after 8 games. Mathematically, the Hyderabad-based franchise are still alive but they would need to win every match that is left to play and would need favourable results from other teams.