David Warner’s magnificent knock sets up Delhi Capitals’ 21-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad
Express News Service
CHENNAI: David Warner was doing what he does best on Thursday. Up against his old side, it was sort of a grudge match for the Australian veteran, who has been as reliable as a swiss watch with the blade in IPL over the last decade or so (barring last season).
Last year had been a forgettable season for the Australian, who was wearing the Sunrisers Hyderabad colours. Three-time Orange Cap winner with the team, runs had dried up and his once happy association with the club, with whom he had claimed the title in 2016, had turned sour.
The southpaw was first stripped off captaincy and eventually reduced to being a cheerleader for the team (was seen waving the flag in the stands in the second half of last season).
So, ahead of Thursday’s clash between SRH and Warner’s current club, Delhi Capitals at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai, how Warner would go about his business was one of the main talking points.
The Australian answered that in emphatic fashion, delivering his best this season (an unbeaten 92 off 58), a knock that helped DC post a 21-run win and move to fifth spot in the IPL table.
Warner had set about with a four off the very first delivery of the second over by Sean Abbott, who was playing in the absence of injured T Natarajan.
Prior to that, Bhuvneshwar Kumar was making the ball talk and had accounted for the wicket of Mandeep Singh, who had replaced Prithvi Shaw. Nerves were bound to be there for Warner, and that reflected in his shot against Abbott, which just evaded the fielder at cover point.
Sensing Bhuvneshwar’s threat, Warner played sensibly in the third over before opening up against Umran Malik, who struggled for line and length, in the next over. Two fours and a six later, Warner was showing sign of things to come.
Mitchell Marsh, No 3, was sent back soon and Warner went back into watchful mode along with skipper Rishabh Pant before finding occasional boundaries.
SRH spinner, Shreyas Gopal, replacing Washington Sundar, was economical in his first over but Pant, after a 11-ball 4, hit different gear to launch three consecutive sixes and a four off Gopal in the ninth over. However, Pant, building a skyscraper in the DC batting chart, departed soon after.
With 11 overs remaining, the responsibility was on Warner, batting at 42, to play the anchor role. He was joined by Rovman Powell, who was coming into the match having scored 104 runs of 52 balls in the last three matches.
The duo kept the scoreboard ticking with some singles and twos. It was in the 12th over that Warner brought up his 54th IPL fifty, his fourth this season, with a pull off Malik’s bowling. Umran conceded as many as 52 runs in 4 overs.
The fact that Powell was dropped off his bowling in the 15th over by SRH skipper Kane Williamson didn’t help matters. That drop proved to be a massive as Powell unleashed his striking power, hitting sixes at will off almost every bowler.
Bhuvneshwar, Abbott, Kartik Tyagi, Umran himself. No one was spared as Powell dominated the death overs, racing to half-century in the 20th over. By the time DC’s innings was over, Powell had added more to finish at unbeaten 67, lifting the team to 207/3. Warner, meanwhile, couldn’t have written a better script for himself.
In reply, SRH lost three wickets within the first seven overs. In-form Aiden Markram and Nicholas Pooran kept the team in the hunt with a 60-run parntership before the former was dismissed.
Pooran, though, was not willing to give up and was dealing in sixes. The West Indian went on to post his second fifty of the season (62 off 34 balls) but that proved to be all in vain for SRH.
Brief Scores: DC 207/3 in 20 ovs (Warner 92 n.o, Powell 67 n.o) vs SRH 186/8 in 20 ovs (Pooran 62; Khaleel 3/30)
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