A quickfire half-century by Sunny Sohal and an equally useful knock of 49 from captain Kumar Sangakkara helped Deccan Chargers register a 16-run victory over Delhi Daredevils in their Indian Premier League match, at the Ferozshah Kotla in Delhi, on Tuesday.
Opting to bat, Sohal (62, 41b, 8x4, 1x6) and Sangakkara (49, 35b, 8x4, 1x6) put on a 92-run stand for the second wicket to lay a solid platform and post a competitive total of 168 for four, even though some disciplined bowling by the Daredevils at the end put the brakes on Deccan Chargers' scoring rate.
But the total proved too big for the hosts, who were never in the race after losing wickets at regular intervals.
David Warner (51, 48b 5x4 1x6) scored a valuable half-century and Yogesh Nagar (23, 11b 1x4 2x6) played a little cameo at the end, but it wasn't enough as the home team could only muster 152 for 7 in their allotted 20 overs.
For the Hyderabad outfit, Harmeet Singh (two for 27) and Daniel Christian (two for 38) provided important breakthroughs while Ojha, Amit Mishra and Shikhar Dhwan chipped in with a wicket apiece.
Chasing a target of 169, Daredevils captain Virender Sehwag came out firing on all cylinders in a bid to give the team a positive start. He struck four boundaries off Christian's over while Warner also gave him good company at the other end. But the former's stay at the wicket was cut short by Harmeet Singh after a seven-ball 12.
The next two overs saw the hosts being pushed on the backfoot as Christian and Harmeet accounted for the wickets of Naman Ojha and Aaron Finch, leaving Daredevils reeling at 38 for three.
While Christian trapped Ojha (2) leg before, Harmeet dismissed Finch for nought, the batsman edging one to Sangakkara.
It was then up to Warner and Venugopal Rao (21) to consolidate the innings. The duo took the team to 78 for three after 10 overs, but after putting on 52 runs for the fourth wicket with Warner, Rao, attempting a six, hit one straight down Christian's throat off Amit Mishra's bowling.
At the other end, Warner, soon after completing his half-century, offered a simple catch to Ravi Teja off part-time spinner Shikhar Dhawan's bowling, after being dropped in the previous over.
Irfan Pathan's horrible IPL continued as he was quickly back in the dressing room, leaving the Daredevils with an uphill task.
Yogesh Nagar and James Hopes (17 off 14 balls) gave the home crowd hope, hitting a few big ones but could not take the team home.
Earlier, Sohal opened the innings with a four through the covers, while Shikhar Dhawan added two more boundaries off consecutive balls off Ashok Dinda's over -- the very first of the match -- to set the rhythm.
But Pathan had other plans and got the first breakthrough for the home team when Dhawan (8) dragged one back on to his stumps trying to slash an away going delivery.
Captain Sangakkara wasted no time and almost immediately got into the thick of action and along with Sohal kept stealing a boundary or two every over to maintain a good run-rate, even though Pathan and Morne Morkel, who replaced Dinda after his expensive first over, keep things reasonably tight.
But the moment left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem was introduced into the attack, Sangakkara straightaway punished the youngster with a lofted six over deep mid-wicket and two fours to place the Chargers in a good position.
Sangakkara and Sohal's attacking approach coupled with Delhi's fielding lapses enabled the Hyderabad outfit amass 90 for one at the end of 10 overs.
But just when things were looking dangerous, Dinda struck for the Daredevils, sending back Sangakkara, Aaron Finch, backpedalling from inside the 30-yard circle, latching on to a brilliant catch.
Sohal, however, continued with his explosive batting, punishing the loose balls with utter disdain to bring up his half-century.
Having reached his fifty, the 23-year-old from Punjab hit Morkel for a six and two boundaries off consecutive deliveries.
Nadeem, however, ended his fine knock when Finch took another good catch, once again running backwards.
Cameron White (31 off 25 balls) hit a six and two fours but some tight bowling by the Delhi bowlers at the end did not let the Chargers put up as many on the board as they would have liked to.