In a high-scoring encounter at Hyderabad, Sunrisers Hyderabad beat Rajasthan Royals by five wickets with an over to spare. A brilliant ton from Sanju Samson was the highlight of the first innings as Rajasthan made a fighting 198 on a flat track after opting to bat first. David Warner got off to a good start in the run-chase and brought the required run rate down before Vijay Shankar and Rashid Khan played eye-catching cameos to steal the game from Rajasthan.
Take a look at some of the key moments from Friday's fixture:
Kane Williamson's brilliant move to catch Rajasthan off guard
Kane Williamson came back to lead the Sunrisers side for this fixture and made an immediate impact from a captaincy point of view. With the Rajasthan openers still settling in, Williamson turned to Rashid Khan to break the opening partnership. While eyebrows were raised for using up an over from the Afghan leg-spinner early, Williamson knew exactly what he was doing.
Rashid, in the eight balls he had bowled to Buttler in all T20s, had dismissed him thrice while conceding just four runs. Buttler's prowess in the powerplays meant that the more he was out at the crease, the more dangerous it was for Sunrisers. Rashid took just two balls to dismiss Buttler, this time bowling him around his legs with a brilliant leg-break as Rajasthan lost their chief accelerator very early in the game.
Jonny Bairstow fluffs a chance and Sanju Samson plunders Bhuvneshwar Kumar
In the 17th over of the innings, Sanju Samson flicked a knuckle ball from Siddharth Kaul too early and the leading edge soared into the night sky. Four fielders converged to take the catch with the keeper, Jonny Bairstow, going for a full stretch dive. He, however, failed to hold onto the chance much to Rajasthan's disbelief. Samson, on 58 then, went on to make a fabulous ton which included a savage onslaught on Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
The Sunrisers seamer dished out length balls at a well settled Samson in the 18th over and watched helplessly as the Rajasthan middle-order batsman smashed 24 runs in the over which included four fours and a six. Samson unfurled his array of strokes as Bhuvneshwar erred and raced into the 80s by the end of the over. The drop from Bairstow proved to be costly for Rajasthan, with Samson making 44 more runs by the end of his innings.
David Warner's cross-batted tennis smash off Jofra Archer's 149.4 kmph delivery
With 199 to chase down, Warner was in no mood to settle down at the wicket before playing his shots. The Australian pulverised the Rajasthan bowling attack in the powerplay overs but reserved his best for the sharp Jofra Archer, who was making Johnny Bairstow sweat at the other end. Archer had sent down a pacy first over to Bairstow where he clocked over 140 kmph every single ball.
Off the first ball of his second over, Archer hurled a back of a length delivery at 149.4 kmph to Warner. If his searing pace had Bairstow ducking, Warner was up to the task and dished out a tennis smash down the ground with utter disdain. The ball rocketed past the non-striker to the long-off fence.
Dhawal Kulkarni's eventful field day
Dhawal Kulkarni had been belted for 14 runs in the opening over of the run-chase but had an eventful couple of overs in the field. When Ben Stokes forced Warner to mistime his hook shot, Kulkarni at the fine leg boundary got underneath the ball and safely pouched the catch to give Rajasthan their first breakthrough.
Two balls later, Johnny Bairstow unleashed an upper cut off Ben Stokes to third man where Kulkarni was stationed. The seamer ran forward to take the catch but fluffed the chance to give the Sunrisers keeper a life. However, he was soon given an opportunity to redeem himself when Bairstow toe-ended a loft down the ground next over off Shreyas Gopal. Kulkarni, the fielder at long-off, timed his jump to perfection and held onto the ball, all the while ensuring he was within the ropes.
Rashid Khan steals Archer's thunder
When Rashid Khan walked in to bat, Sunrisers Hyderabad were in a spot of bother, having lost two wickets in two balls. They needed 32 from 26 balls but had to deal with Archer's menacing yorkers in the death. With 12 needed off 12 balls, Archer steamed in and bowled with fury. His extreme pace and immaculate accuracy made run-scoring particularly difficult, but Rashid had other ideas.
The player from Afghanistan went back in his crease, stayed low, and creamed a full length ball from Archer through cover for a boundary to bring the equation down to four runs to win from seven balls. The next ball, once again, he used depth of the crease and whipped a yorker length ball over deep square leg for a six that ensured victory for his team. His 8-ball 15 and the two boundaries off Archer turned the game in those final tense moments.
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New Zealand captain Kane Williamson was on Wednesday ruled out of the second Test against England to give much-needed rest to his "irritated" left elbow ahead of the World Test Championship final against India
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