Warner’s brilliance keeps Hyderabad in the hunt

His knock of 90 ensures team jump from seventh to fifth and stay in contention, along with Rajasthan Royals, to finish behind Kolkata, who secured the third play-off spot earlier.
David Warner missed out on a century but his 90 runs were more than valuable for his team, Sunrisers Hyderabad. Pawan Singh / The National
David Warner missed out on a century but his 90 runs were more than valuable for his team, Sunrisers Hyderabad. Pawan Singh / The National

Chennai 185-3 (20 ov)

Hyderabad 189-4 (19.4 ov)

Toss: Hyderabad, chose to field

Chennai: Dhoni 57 not out, Hussey 50; Karn 2-19

Hyderabad: Warner 90, Shikhar 64; Raina 1-17

Man of the match: David Warner (Hyderabad)

David Warner displayed a brand of batting that could be labelled violent, as he hammered a 45-ball 90 against Chennai Super Kings to keep alive Sunrisers Hyderabad’s chances of qualifying for the play-offs.

Hyderabad beat Chennai by six wickets at a the sparsely filled JSCA International Stadium in Ranchi, and with Bangalore eliminated from the race after losing to Kolkata Knight Riders in the day’s first game, Hyderabad will hope Rajasthan Royals slip up against Kings XI Punjab today.

Darren Sammy’s decision to bowl first had seemed horribly wrong when Chennai got off to a belligerent start, led by Dwayne Smith who hammered a 28-ball 47. They were then restricted during the middle overs, but MS Dhoni and David Hussey both scored half-centuries late on, adding an unbeaten 108 for the fourth wicket to boost Chennai’s total to 185 for three.

Dhoni – who was dropped on 19 by Aaron Finch – took 22 runs off Dale Steyn in the final over.

But Warner’s ambush rendered meaningless everything Chennai did.

His attack, of fierce power and utmost brute, helped set up the chase as he added 116 for the opening stand with Shikhar Dhawan. Warner was dismissed by John Hastings, the Chennai debutant, when he was 10 runs short of a well-deserved century.

Then, Dhawan carried his bat and helped complete the chase with an unbeaten 50-ball 64, with Naman Ojha for company.

Having watched Smith go about his business in the first innings, Warner displayed his intent early on. Dhawan was a passive observer, while his partner hammered seven boundaries in the first four overs. But that was just the starter.

The main course was dished out to Hastings – in the sixth over, Warner hit five fours off his fellow Australian and put on display an array of shots.

He reached fifty in 25 balls, then got even more aggressive. Dhawan was happy to take the singles and hand the strike back to Warner, who spared no one – the bowling of R Ashwin, Mohit Sharma, Pawan Negi and Ravindra Jadeja was all given a thrashing.

With not many to turn to, Dhoni brought back Hastings in the 12th over the ploy worked. Warner failed to connect cleanly with an attempted drive, and the inside-edge disturbed his stumps.

Hyderabad still needed 70 off 53 balls and Dhawan, who seemed to have had enough of waiting and watching took charge. Batting with Ojha 52 runs were added for the second wicket to take Hyderabad to the brink of victory.

A few wickets then fell – Ojha holed out off Raina, Finch was run out and Sammy holed out – but it was too little too late for Chennai, who succumbed to their third successive loss.

Manoj Narayan is a sub editor with Wisden India. For more on IPL visit wisdenindia.com and follow them on Twitter at wisdenindia

Published: May 22, 2014 04:00 AM

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