Sehwag helps Delhi storm past Mumbai



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Virender Sehwag.

These 14 alphabets decided to fire, with 15 boundaries from the bat, as the Delhi Daredevils went on to register their first win of IPL 2013 with a nine-wicket win over the Mumbai Indians at the Ferozeshah Kotla on Sunday.

Chasing 161 for a win, Sehwag smashed his way past Mumbai with some uninhibited hitting. The 34-year old made full use of the room that the bowlers were offering, and he swung away with an entire stadium getting behind him. Not that Mumbai didn’t have a chance. Jasprit Bumrah could have caught a ball that Sehwag hit to him at short fine leg, but he failed to move forward, and the ball ended up hitting his knees.

Sehwag ensured that he would bring Mumbai down to their knees.

The ‘Nawab of Najafgarh’ unleashed a brutal assault, as fours and sixes started to rain at the Kotla. At the other end, Mahela Jayawardene decided that he wasn’t going to be left behind. The Daredevils skipper drove and swept his way to a fine half-century, punching gloves with Sehwag as they placed Delhi on track for an easy win.

Though the Sri Lankan fell leg-before-wicket to countryman Lasith Malinga, Sehwag signed off by hitting Bumrah for a four to bring the smiles back on  the faces of the Delhi Daredevils.

Earlier, Mumbai’s decision to split their opening pair of Tendulkar and Ponting worked, after they won the toss and elected to bat first. Albeit for Tendulkar.  Ponting’s replacement Smith was caught, trying to clear Umesh Yadav off Roelof van der Merwe. Dinesh Karthik’s run out then brought Rohit Sharma to the crease.

It would be the start of a fruitful partnership.

Sachin Tendulkar drove, pulled and paddled his way to a half-century, his first of the tournament. The 39-year old had Shahbaz Nadeem to thank for the opportunity to raise his bat, after the left-arm spinner dropped a simple caught-and-bowled chance. At the other end, when Rohit Sharma got the strike, he didn’t think twice before hitting the ball away to the boundary.

Agarkar and Pathan paid the price for bowling full-tosses to Sharma, who swatted them away for a six. When the ball was pitched on driving length, the right-hander took a step forward and drove through the gap.  Tendulkar fell playing away from his body, with Warner taking the catch at extra cover. Rohit was around till the last ball of the penultimate over, smashing his fifth six, before being caught by Andre Russell at long on.

Shahbaz Nadeem dropped Pollard, who went on to hit the last ball of the inning for a six. Mumbai finished with 161/4, but Virender Sehwag made sure that they wouldn’t allow their seventh IPL 2013 match to slip away from their hands.

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