Warner, in the process, also brought up his fifty     34th overall in IPL     and earned the Orange Cap as well    IANS (File Photo)
Warner, in the process, also brought up his fifty 34th overall in IPL and earned the Orange Cap as well IANS (File Photo)

Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) skipper David Warner led from the front and played a captain s knock to guide his team to 159 for 6 in match 19 of Indian Premier League (IPL) against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium at Uppal, Hyderabad. Batting first on a wicket where the ball was not coming on to the bat, Warner almost single-handedly propelled his side to a total considered beyond par on a sluggish track. He was well supported by Naman Ojha (34), while other batsmen struggled to get going. Rashid Khan, their spin sensation, remained unbeaten on 1-ball 6, hitting the final ball of the innings over the boundary ropes. This ensured KXIP would be chasing nothing less than eight an over. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Kings XI Punjab Match 19

Glenn Maxwell won the toss and opted to bowl. His side made a solitary change for this game, with Ishant Sharma replacing Varun Aaron. SRH, on the other hand, made as many as three changes for this important home game. Barinder Sran and Siddharth Kaul were brought in for Ashish Nehra and Ben Cutting in what can be touted as like-for-like replacements. Bipul Sharma, the spin-bowling all-rounder, made way for Aghan sensation Mohammad Nabi. The match, thus, gained historical significance even before the first ball being bowled. This was, after all, first occasion when two players from an Associate Nation were featuring in the same XI in an IPL game.

Warner and Shikhar Dhawan gave a slow start to the SRH innings. Dhawan was the first to fall, when he departed trying to hook a short ball from Mohit Sharma for a run-a-ball 15. More than the bowler s wicket, it was Wriddhiman Saha s, who timed his jump well and took a smart catch.

Moises Henriques then joined Warner, while the KXIP bowlers continued to keep things tight. The runs dried up and as the match progressed, it was apparent that the pitch was slow and run-scoring difficult. Warner reassessed the things in the middle and perhaps decided to stay till the end.

He, however, lost partners quickly from the other end. Akshar Patel removed Henriques and Yuvraj Singh off successive balls. While Henriques was stumped trying to hit the ball out of the park, Yuvraj was caught behind for his golden duck. From here on, Ojha joined forces with Warner.

While the captain decided to drop the anchor, Ojha took his chances and scored some vital runs at a brisk pace. The duo added 60 runs for the fourth wicket and bailed the team out from a precarious situation of 50 for 3. Ojha was eventually dismissed off KC Cariappa s bowling for 20-ball 34.

Deepak Hooda 12 (10) added 30 runs with Warner before falling to a short ball from Mohit. Nabi departed for a 3-ball 2 trying to go big, which was the need of the hour. Warner then guided the team past 150-run mark. Warner, in the process, also brought up his fifty 34th overall in IPL and earned the Orange Cap as well. He, as a matter of fact, struck fifth fifty against KXIP in as many games. Warner stayed unbeaten till the end on 70 and propelled SRH to 159 for 6, a competitive total looking at the sluggish surface.

For KXIP, spinners got the wickets while the pace trio contained as well as took wickets. The three Sharmas Mohit, Ishant and Sandeep kept things tight. As for wickets, Mohit and Akshar picked up 2 apiece, while Cariappa and Sandeep picked up a wicket each.

Brief score:

Sunrisers Hyderabad 159 for 6 in 20 overs (David Warner 70*, Naman Ojha 20; Mohit Sharma 2 for 25, Akshar Patel 2 for 33) vs Kings XI Punjab