Delhi Capitals all-rounder Mitchell Marsh finally had a noteworthy contribution to show on Monday night against Punjab Kings, and the Australian cricketer said that he had made up his mind to clobber the opposition bowling in powerplay before the ball started to turn. Marsh, who missed several games after testing positive for Covid-19 and spending a few days in hospital as well, scored a patient 48-ball 63 and his partnerships with Sarfaraz Khan and Lalit Yadav took Delhi Capitals to a fighting 159/7 on a spinning track. It helped the Rishabh Pant-led side climb to fourth place in the points table and brighten their chances of a playoff berth with one league match still to go for them. Punjab Kings once again self-destructed, dishing out another below-par performance against Delhi spinner Kuldeep Yadav and pacer Shardul Thakur as they succumbed to a 17-run loss.
Following the defeat, the Mayank Agarwal-led side is out of IPL 2022 despite a game remaining. Marsh opined spin was the decisive factor in Delhi's win on Monday night. "It was a great win. You can never judge a wicket until both teams bat on it. I walked off sort of thinking that we left a couple out there. But it turned, didn't it. The spinners turned the game in the middle and 160 wound up being enough," said the Australian. He said that the aim was to get as many runs on the board in powerplay as possible after opener David Warner went for a first-ball duck. "(The intent was to) Get as many as I can in the powerplay before it starts turning. For the last sort of 18 months, I've had that mentality in the powerplay. I thought it was a really good partnership with Sarfaraz. He played some amazing shots. It would've been nice to get out of the powerplay one down and then we probably could have kept going. But our innings was sort of stop-start with wickets. Credit goes to the bowlers. The way they (Punjab) bowled was outstanding." The Australian said that once Warner went without opening his account, the approach was to forge a good partnership.
"It's just about getting a partnership going. We probably weren't able to quite do that throughout our middle overs and that doesn't allow you to get up to a 180 score. It's just about whoever comes in, trying to build that partnership. Even if it's 15 or 20 runs, it can change momentum. On Monday night, we weren't able to do that, but like I said, 160 wound up being enough. "I think that's our first back-to-back win of the season. We spoke about that (before the match). It's been one of those seasons where we've been stop-start. In long tournaments like this, it's about peaking at the right time. I think over the last week or 10 days, we've played some really good cricket and that's a really good sign. We've got one more to go. We know if we win that, we'll be in the finals and we can give it a real good shake. "I've got great belief in this team. We've got a lot of talent across the board and if we can string one more together going into the finals, it'll give us great momentum," added Marsh.