Manish Pandey and Vijay Shankar were the stars of the nigh as Sunrisers Hyderabad comfortably defeated Rajasthan Royals to keep their hopes alive of making it to the playoffs of the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The win helped David Warner’s men climb to the fifth spot with eight points from 10 matches. They can end up in the last four if they manage to win the remaining matches. For Rajasthan, on the other hand, the campaign could well be over after the defeat on Thursday.

Chasing a 155-run target, Hyderabad were off to a shaky start, losing the services of skipper Warner (4) and opener Jonny Bairstow (10) cheaply, thanks to Jofra Archer’s (2/21) magical opening spell.

However, an unbeaten 140-run partnership between Pandey (83 off 47 balls) and Shankar (52 off 51), eventually helped the Orange Army reaching the target with much more ease than they had initially anticipated.

Pandey’s unbeaten knock was laced with four boundaries and eight maximums while Shankar’s innings contained six fours.

Except Archer, the other Royals’ bowlers, especially Ben Stokes, Kartik Tyagi, and Ankit Rajpoot, not just leaked runs but also remained wicketless.

Earlier, some disciplined bowling by SRH bowlers, especially Jason Holder (3/33), restricted RR to a modest 154/6 wickets in the allotted 20 overs.

Barring the 56-run stand for the second wicket between Ben Stokes (30) and Sanju Samson (36), the other SRH batsmen failed to convert the starts and as a result, the 2008 IPL champions were deprived of a bigger total on the board.

Brief scores: RR: 154/6 wkts in 20 overs (Sanju Samson 36, Ben Stokes 30; Jason Holder 3/33) lost to SRH 156/2 wkts in 18.1 overs (Manish Pandey 83 not out, Vijay Shankar 52 not out) by 8 wkts