Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) continued their winning streak as they knocked out the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Eliminator match in Abu Dhabi to grab a seat for the Qualifiers-2. The David Warner-led side chased down 132 runs with a couple deliveries to spare and six wickets in hand and recorded their fourth consecutive win of the season.
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Speaking on the victory and his gutsy knock of 50* off 44 deliveries, Kane Williamson mentioned how tough it was, especially, against a classy side like RCB on such a wicket.
“Look, it was a tough game. It was never going to be easy against a class side like RCB. The surface was a little tricky and chasing anything on it wasn’t easy,” Williamson said in the post-match presentation.
The Kiwi cricketer was awarded the ‘Player of the Match’ for his calm and composed inning and ensuring that the Men in Orange taste the much-coveted victory in the end.
Opting to bowl first, David Warner & Co. capitalized the powerplay by scalping the ever crucial wicket of RCB skipper Virat Kohli (6) and followed with that of Devdutt Padikkal (1). Credits to Jason Holder for bowling the right areas and getting the edge onto RCB’s opening pair.
Aaron Finch (32, 30b) and Ab de Villiers (56, 43b) added 41 runs for the third wicket, but the situation got away from RCB’s control following the former’s departure while trying to loft spinner Shahbaz Nadeem onto covers.
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The middle and lower-middle order comprising Moeen Ali (0), Shivam Dube (8), and Washington Sundar (5) couldn’t stitch any partnership in between which adversely affected RCB’s scoring ability in the middle and death overs.
Eventuallyy, AB de Villiers was dismissed off a yorker from pacer T Natarajan and thus, RCB could manage to add just 18 runs in the last 13 deliveries and ended with a score of 131/8 in 20 overs.
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From SRH’s bowling unit, Jason Holder (3/25) stood tall with his rip-roaring figures in the must-win feud and was followed by T Natarajan (2/33) and Shahbaz Nadeem (1/30). Sandeep Sharma (0/21) and spinner Rashid Khan (0/22) were pretty economical in their overs and kept the pressure mounting on RCB batters.
Jason Holder is cooler than me: Kane Williamson
Though the momentum was initially in RCB’s favor in the second innings, as they uprooted openers David Warner (17) and Shreevats Goswami (0) in the powerplay, and sometime later Manish Pandey (24) at a crucial moment.
It was at this stage that Kane Williamson took on the role of an anchor, held the wicket from an end, formed an unbeaten 65* run stand with Jason Holder (24*, 20b), played the likes of Adam Zampa (1/12) and Yuzvendra Chahal (1/24) to guide SRH safely to a must-win triumph.
“It was a challenge for us to restrict them to that kind of total. They also had two world-class spinners. We did well to go through their spells without losing too many wickets.
Batting at 4 can vary a lot and becomes surface dependent. A few shots from Jason helped. He is cooler than me. The all-rounder in the team has been well held by him,” said the 30-year-old Tauranga-born.
Sunrisers Hyderabad would be facing the Delhi Capitals (DC) in Qualifiers-2 in Abu Dhabi on November 8. The winner would then lock horns with Mumbai Indians (MI) in the mega-finale on November 10 in Dubai.