Remarkable performances from captain and opening batsman David Warner and Afghanistan leg spinner Rashid Khan helped defending champions SRH [Sunrises Hyderabad] crushed Gujrat Lions by nine wickets in the IPL [Indian Premier League] at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium on Sunday evening. The Austrlian opener roared back to form with an unbeaten stunning 76 after new comer Rashid weaved a fascinate spell as Hyderabad overpowered Gujarat. It was Rashid Khan’s 3 for 19 that supported Hyderabad restrict Gujrat to a measly 135 for 7 in 20 overs and then the former Delhi Daredevils batsman [Warner] accursed his way to an unbeaten 76 off 45 balls to finish the game in 15.3 overs.
Australian All-rounder Moises Henriques (52 not out) once again verified his worth with the willow as the Aussies duo added 108 runs for the unbeaten second wicket partnership.
While this was Sunrises’s second victory in as many games, last year's top-four finisher Gujrat Lions now have had two loss in a row.
David Warner, who had a recent poor Test series versus India, would be happy as he was in his elements, whipping six boundaries and four huge sixes.
In the beginning, after an splendid debut, Rashid Khan once again finished with best figures of 3 for 19 in four overs. He rattled the Gujrat Lions top-order with crucial wickets of Brendon McCullum (5), Aaron Finch (3) and captain Suresh Raina (5) in the 5th, 7th and 9th over of the Gujrat innings.
Suresh Raina side never redeemed from the setbacks even though wicket-keeper batsman Dinesh Karthik (30) and Caribbean all-rounder Dwayne Smith (37) added 56 runs for the fifth wicket to stem the rot.
But it was the breakage done by the Afghan leg-spinner that spelt doom for Gujrat Lions.
The former Kiwi captain McCullum was gone trying to sweep a googly while Suresh Raina played for the wrong 'un only to be fooled by an orthodox leg-break. The dynamic Finch also failed to read a googly and in the process, was captured plumb in front.
Indian pace bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2/21 in 4 overs) and experienced seamer Ashish Nehra (1/27 in 4 overs) also bowled well.
The hrad-hiting batsman Jason Roy (31 off 21 balls) hit a few boundaries before a mistimed pull shot off Bhuvneshwar Kumar brought his downfall.
Struggling at 57 for 4, it wasn't easy for Dinesh Karthik and Dwayne Smith to pull things back with an attacking mind-set as there weren't too many reconized batsmen left after them.