Rahul Tripathi batted like a man on a mission before Umran Malik brims with his pace as Sunrisers Hyderabad kept their small IPL playoff hopes alive with a three-run win over Mumbai Indians on Tuesday. Tripathi scored 76 off 44 balls to lead Sunrisers Hyderabad to a challenging 193 for six. He was skillfully complemented by Priyam Garg (42) and Nicholas Pooran (38). Malik (3/23 in three overs) then produced a sensational performance as the seasoned Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1/26 out of 4) threw a wicket maiden in the crucial 19th over to stop MI at 190 for seven despite Rohit’s best efforts Sharma (48), Ishan Kishan (43) and Tim David (46).
The win keeps SRH on paper racing in the playoffs as they move up to 12 points. They have to win their last game and hope other results have their way.
In the 194 chase, Rohit was at his best and looked set for a big score. He gave a solid start to Mumbai’s chase alongside Kishan, with whom he shared an opening score of 95 runs.
The two looted 17 runs in the ninth dan bowled by Malik, with the pacer guilty of bowling two no balls and a walk.
But two overs later, Kane Williamson’s decision to bowl Washington Sundar (1/36) paid off as Rohit holed up in the deep end to Jagadeesha Suchith.
Kishan, looking uneasy against Malik’s short balls, followed his skipper into the next over when the Jammu-pacer, who had a terrible first left, redeemed himself. He spiked the ball to the stumps from around the wicket for Priyam Garg to complete a fine catch midway through.
The duo made another breakthrough when Malik threw another bouncer and forced Daniel Sams to pull. Garg jumped high over his head with his arms fully extended to complete a brilliant catch at midwicket.
Needing 44 out of 18, the great David shot through to 46 from just 18 balls to keep Mumbai’s hopes of a fourth win this season alive.
David hit four sixes out of 18 after bowled by T Natarajan, including a monstrous 114m hit, to bring the comparison down to 19 of 12. However, Natarajan (0/60) managed to free himself from the last ball when David ran out .
The seasoned Bhuvneshwar dropped a wicket maiden 19th to tip the game back in SRH’s favour.
Earlier, Tripathi, who scored his third half-century of the season with the help of nine fours and three sixes, brilliantly set up for a memorable knock.
Invited to bat, the Sunrisers’ gamble to play Garg at the top of the leaderboard paid off. The 21-year-old played a fine knock as he shared a 78-run partnership with Tripathi after the in-form Abhishek Sharma (9) was sent back in the third over.
Garg, who was dropped on 10, made good use of his reprieve as he hit the fence four times and twice over it in his 26-ball innings.
On the other hand, Tripathi looked in his element. He skipped Jasprit Bumrah (1/32) for a six and back-to-back fours in the fifth.
Tripathi and Garg collected 57 in a productive power play and maintained a healthy run rate of almost 10 runs per over while hitting responsibly.
Once Garg was caught and bowled by Ramandeep Singh (3/20) at medium speed, Pooran, who was promoted to number 3, joined the party.
The flamboyant southpaw smoked two straight sixes over a long and deep backsquare of Riley Merdith (1/44) in the 13th over before smacking Mayank Markande (0/31) for a limit and a max in the next over.
The MI bowlers, led by Ramndeep, were able to make a mini comeback as they ousted Pooran, Tripathi and Aiden Markram (2) in the span of eight balls.
Skipper Kane Williamson (8 out) struggled to beat the order as he was unable to get the big shots going.
Looking for a 200-plus score, the Sunrisers could only manage one boundary in the last two overs, yielding 19 runs.