Kane Williamson, the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) skipper, felt that getting the wicket of the in-form Glenn Maxwell was the key for his side’s 4-run victory over the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
SRH defended 142 to register their third win of the season, after Maxwell, who scored 40 off 25, had threatened to chase down the target, before being run out by a direct hit from Kane Williamson. The SRH captain also took the good catch of Shahbaz Ahmed at a crucial juncture.
“Game was getting tight and dismissing him [Maxwell] one way or the other was the key. They are a fantastic side and even though we are not in the contention it was great to see the fight,” Kane Williamson said at the post-match presentation.
Kane Williamson, who was also adjudged the Man of the Match for his batting and fielding contribution, scored 31 runs. He started off briskly, dealing in boundaries early on, picking four fours in the first ten balls he faced in his innings. He built a 70-run stand with Jason Roy.
The Kiwi remains happy to see some improvement in his side that has endured a poor season.
“It’s been a tough season and it’s great to see some of those small improvements. To see those small adjustments was good. We thought that total was competitive and we saw that fight throughout the ball as well.
“I was just trying to maximize the powerplay and the ball was holding on the surface and we were fortunate to build a partnership and we knew things wouldn’t happen quickly from a bowling perspective, but we knew if we held our nerve and stay there for longer periods, we can build that pressure,” he added.
Umran Malik certainly is special: Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson heaped praises on Umran Malik, the young pace sensation from Jammu. After turning heads on his debut three days ago with his raw pace, when he clocked 151, Malik went further today, bowling a delivery of 152.95 kph – the fastest of IPL 2021 by any bowler.
“He [Umran Malik] certainly is special. We saw him in the nets in the last couple of seasons and he is a real competitor and is proving to be effective even on slower surfaces. He’s got a lot of mates in the team as well and that helps in sharing the knowledge. It’s a great opportunity for the younger guys to get involved and hopefully we will keep learning and we go again on Friday.
“Lots of last over finishes and we keep trying and applying ourselves and the surfaces haven’t allowed for a rhythm and it’s good to see the win,” the SRH skipper concluded.
SRH will take on the Mumbai Indians on Friday in Abu Dhabi. Mumbai will be looking for a win – a big win if KKR defeats RR on Thursday – to qualify for the playoffs; SRH could play the party spoilers for the defending champions.