IPL 8: Hyderabad survive Miller blitz for crucial win

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May 11, 2015

Sunrisers Hyderabad 185 for 5 (Warner 81, Hendricks 2-40) beat Kings XI Punjab 180 for 7 (Miller 89*, Henriques 3-16) by 5 runs

David Warner struck six fours and five sixes in his 52-ball 81. © Getty Images

May 11, 2015

Sunrisers Hyderabad 185 for 5 (Warner 81, Hendricks 2-40) beat Kings XI Punjab 180 for 7 (Miller 89*, Henriques 3-16) by 5 runs

David Warner struck six fours and five sixes in his 52-ball 81. © Getty Images

UPPAL, HYDERABAD: A day after he hailed AB de Villiers as the “best batter in world cricket” through a tweet, David Warner’s mature 52-ball 81 and smart captaincy setup Sunrisers Hyderabad’s crucial five-run win against Kings XI Punjab at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Uppal, Hyderabad on Monday (May 11).

Warner hit four of his five sixes between midwicket and long-on, but the highlight of his knock – during which he became the first batsman in the Pepsi IPL 2015 to cross the 500-run mark – was the way he picked the length early and positioned himself to toy with the bowling attack. His willingness to bat deep into the innings and set a big total instead of depending on a fickle batting line-up was evident in the way he rotated the strike between the boundary balls.

After Hyderabad made 185 for 5, the bowlers and fielders backed up Warner’s smart moves on the field excellently, as Punjab were restricted to 180 for 7 even though David Miller threatened to run away with the game with an unbeaten 44-ball 89.

Considering the ease with which Warner executed his sixth half-century this season, his dismissal off the first ball of the 18th over was rather tame. Having middled almost all deliveries, Warner failed to get underneath a low full toss from Beuran Hendricks and Gurkeerat Singh accepted a simple catch at midwicket on the 30-yard circle.

Warner had not yet settled down in the dugout when George Bailey’s sleek work ran Naman Ojha out off the very next ball. Hyderabad were once again in danger of collapsing after a solid start, but an unbroken 28-run stand in 2.4 overs for the sixth wicket between KL Rahul and Karn Sharma ensured that Warner’s effort were not in vain. That Punjab bowled a spree of full tosses and misdirected short deliveries only aided Hyderabad’s march.

Warner batted freely because of the support he received from his partners. Shikhar Dhawan blazed his way to 24 before Glenn Maxwell deceived him in the air and had him stumped off the first ball after the Power Play overs. Then, Moises Henriques and Eoin Morgan kept the charge on, hitting five fours and two sixes between them, before the duo were victims of two smart catches on the midwicket fence.

Punjab’s opening pair of M Vijay and Manan Vohra, who was brilliant on the field, got the chase off to a flying start before Warner made yet another strong impression on the game.

With the batsmen enjoying the pace off the pitch, Warner introduced Bipul Sharma in the fifth over and the left-arm spinner struck with his fifth delivery. The ball stopped a bit and Vijay, already committed to the stroke, watched in disbelief as Dhawan pulled off a low spectacular catch at cover. The first ball of his next over, Bipul had Vohra caught at long-on off yet another delivery that lacked pace.

The focus then shifted to Maxwell and Warner brought back Trent Boult for his second over. A moving back-of-the-length delivery from Boult was too good for Maxwell, who nicked it to Ojha behind the stumps.

It was then the turn of Henriques to hammer decisive nails in Punjab’s coffin. He needed just six balls for his first strike when Rahul ran in from mid-off to produce yet another stunning catch that sent Wriddhiman Saha back. He also prised out Bailey and Gurkeerat to finish with miserly returns of 3 for 16 in four overs.

David Miller smashed a 44 ball 89 in vain, Sunrisers Hyderabad v Kings XI Punjab, IPL 2015, Hyderabad, May 11, 2015

Miller, always playing catching up from the time he took guard, entertained the crowd and put himself in a position where he had to hit the last two balls of the match for sixes to pull off a heist. But, an otherwise ordinary Ishant Sharma ensured that the penultimate ball did not produce a run.

Back in the top four on the points table, Warner’s Hyderabad would love the sight of the waving orange flags as they give themselves two more chances in front of a vociferous home crowd to make it to the playoffs.


Courtesy: Wisden India