Sunrisers stop Rajasthan’s run, slide into final

CHENNAI: A tricky two-paced surface, used for the first time this season at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, coupled with a short boundary on one side posed a significant challenge for the teams and it was Sunrisers Hyderabad who mastered the dynamic conditions to book their spot in the IPL final.

With a 36-run win over Rajasthan Royals in Qualifier 2, Sunrisers have set-up a title showdown with Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday.

When the ball was not turning much in the first innings, Rajasthan Royals banked on their pacers Trent Boult, Sandeep Sharma and Avesh Khan who expertly utilised slower deliveries to restrict Sunrisers to 175 for 9. The Royals pace trio shared eight wickets among them.

What was initially considered an under-par total, soon proved too good. To their credit, Sunrisers used their spinners to telling effect. As the wicket started gripping and turning, Sunrisers spin duo of Shahbaz Ahmed (3/23) and Abhishek Sharma (2/24) ran through Royals line-up for an emphatic win.

Rajasthan were 51 for 1 in Powerplay, but once opener Yashasvi Jaiswal departed for a 21-ball 42, they fell from 65 for 1 to 79 for 5. Dhruv Jurel waged a lone battle by scoring an unbeaten 56 off 35 balls.

Earlier, Heinrich Klaasen’s 34-ball 50 was the saving grace for Sunrisers as their middle-order suffered a dramatic collapse.

Sunrisers opener Abhishek Sharma began with a bang, hitting a six over deep midwicket, but he fell in the last ball of the first over attempting to pull Boult again. Rahul Tripathi walked in with intent, targeting boundaries behind the square to maintain a high scoring rate, while Travis Head played a quieter role at the other end.

Boult, in his third over, delivered a double blow by dismissing Tripathi with a slower ball and Aiden Markram with a length ball. Both catches were expertly taken by Yuzvendra Chahal at short third, reducing Sunrisers to 57 for 3.

After scoring 68 runs in the Powerplay, Sunrisers struggled to accelerate as Royals bowlers R. Ashwin, Chahal, and Sandeep kept the batters on a short leash. For the record, Sandeep bowled 18 slower deliveries in his four-over spell. A superb lofted six over extra cover by Klaasen broke a 26-delivery boundary drought.

Midway through the innings, Sandeep outfoxed Head with another slower delivery, which the Australian guided straight to Ashwin at short third man. In the 14th over, Avesh struck twice, dismissing Nitish Reddy and Abdul Samad in consecutive deliveries, plunging Sunrisers into deep trouble at 120 for 6.

For the second game in a row, Hyderabad had to deploy their impact player Shahbaz in the first innings itself to bolster their struggling batting line-up.


Sunrisers Hyderabad: Travis Head c Ashwin b Sandeep Sharma 34, Abhishek Sharma c Kohler-Cadmore b Boult 12, Rahul Tripathi c Chahal b Boult 37, Aiden Markram c Chahal b Boult 1, Heinrich Klaasen b Sandeep Sharma 50, Nitish Reddy c Chahal b Avesh Khan 5, Abdul Samad b Avesh Khan 0, Shahbaz Ahmed c Dhruv Jurel b Avesh Khan 18, Pat Cummins not out 5, Jaydev Unadkat run out (Avesh Khan) 5. Extras (lb-1, w-7) 8. Total (for 9 wickets in 20 overs) 175.

Fall of wickets: 13-1, 55-2, 57-3, 99-4, 120-5, 120-6, 163-7, 170-8, 175-9.

Bowling: Trent Boult 4-0-45-3, Ravichandran Ashwin 4-0-43-0, Sandeep Sharma 4-0-25-2, Avesh Khan 4-0-27-3, Yuzvendra Chahal 4-0-34-0.

Rajasthan Royals: Yashasvi Jaiswal c Abdul Samad b Shahbaz Ahmed 42, Tom Kohler-Cadmore c Tripathi b Cummins 10, Sanju Samson c Aiden Markram b Abhishek Sharma 10, Riyan Parag c Abhishek Sharma b Shahbaz Ahmed 6, Dhruv Jurel not out 56, Ravichandran Ashwin c Klaasen b Shahbaz Ahmed 0, Shimron Hetmeyer b Abhishek Sharma 4, Rovman Powell c Abhishek Sharma b Natarajan 6, Trent Boult not out 0. Extras (lb-1, nb-1, w-3) 5. Total (for 7 wickets in 20 overs) 139.

Fall of wickets: 1-24, 2-65, 3-67, 4-79, 5-79, 6-92, 7-124.

Bowling: Bhuvneshwar Kumar 3-0-33-0, Pat Cummins 4-0-30-1, T. Natarajan 3-0-13-1, Jaydev Unadkat 1-0-5-0, Shahbaz Ahmed 4-0-23-3, Abhishek Sharma 4-0-24-2, Aiden Markram 1-0-10-0.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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