Sunrisers Hyderabad continued their winning run in Vivo IPL 11 by registering yet another victory by 11 runs over Rajasthan Royals, courtesy some exceptional bowling by the Hyderabad bowlers.
For another time, the Hyderabad bowlers managed to defend a below par total of 151 runs. Earlier, it was a brilliant knock by Kane Williamson which propelled Hyderabad to 151. Rajasthan bowlers were excellent in the death overs which restricted them to 151 after losing momentum early on.
It was Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson who won the toss and changing the trend; he elected to bat first.
Alex Hales made his debut for the Sunrisers Hyderabad. He walked out to begin proceedings alongside Shikhar Dhawan. Hales started with a crisp drive and gull pull of Dhawal Kulkarni.
On the other hand, Dhawan was dismissed early, as offie Krishnappa Gowtham castled him with a slider. It was a good delivery which breached Dhawan’s defence. From there on it was a brilliant partnership between Kane Williamson and Alex Hales which got them back on the track.
Hales began with exquisite drives and carried on the flow. He looked in really good touch and had cemented his place for at least the next three games.
He struck four fours during his innings of 45 off 39 deliveries before Gowtham returned in his 2nd spell and provided the all-important breakthrough. Kane Williamson, on the other hand, continued his rich vein of form and ended up smashing yet another half-century.
The two sixes of the extra cover region were simply gorgeous. His innings of 63 off 43 deliveries were studded with seven fours and a couple of hits over the fence.
However, his innings was ended by his countrymen Ish Sodhi. He got an inside edge which was taken brilliantly by Jos Buttler behind the stumps. From there on it was a brilliant comeback by the Rajasthan Royals bowlers to restrict Hyderabad to a moderate total of just 151 runs in their allotted 20 overs. Jofra Archer was quite brilliant and ended up bagging three crucial wickets in his four overs spell. Gowtham also bowled brilliantly and finished with impressive figures of 2/18 in his allotted overs.
Chasing the modest total, skipper Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi began the proceedings. The latter was dismissed pretty early on in the innings. Sanju Samson came back to form with a fluent 40 off 30 deliveries.
He struck some exceptional blows and in the process hit three fours and a six. All-rounder Ben Stokes got dismissed for nought by off-spinner Yusuf Pathan. It was a short of length delivery which uprooted his timbers.
From there on wickets started falling in regular succession which never really allowed Rajasthan to go for the chase. Yet again, the Hyderabad bowlers did the job for their franchise and defended a below-par total.
Siddharth Kaul again turned out to be the wrecker in chief for Hyderabad bagging a couple of wickets for just 23 runs. Sandeep Sharma also bowled brilliantly and conceded only 15 runs by bagging a solitary wicket.
Here is what winning skipper Kane Williamson said at the post-match presentation,
“I think the contribution from the batting order on that surface to get 150, which was a par total, and then to squeeze well without bowling like we have in the last couple of games was incredible. They did get off to a good start, put us under pressure, but it was nice for us to bounce back in the second half. The surface was definitely on the slower side, with slow turn and not a lot of bounce. They used the hard length ball well with the big boundaries, which was something we wanted to incorporate as well in our innings.”
“I thought in the first part we were very good and were able to restrict them to a decent total. Yusuf’s wicket was fortunate, probably not his best delivery, but was nice to get that wicket at that stage because he (Stokes) is such a dangerous player. The way the guys went out today, we didn’t get that 10-15 more on another challenging surface, but we did see an improvement, which we look to carry forward. T20 is pretty fickle in nature, and it is nice to get a few wins on the board, but each game is a tough game. We need to adapt to conditions, not get ahead of ourselves, which have varied a lot and that’s what we aim to build on and do going forward as well. Alex (Hales) is world class in this format; it was nice for him to get us off to a good start and it was great for him to have that opportunity.”