David Warner, who recently pulled out of Australia’s tour of Zimbabwe because his batteries were “slowly draining” was completely charged up against Royal Challengers Bangalore as he masterminded a successful chase in Hyderabad.
Warner, promoted to the role of an opener alongside Shikhar Dhawan for the first time in this seventh edition of the Indian Premier League, smashed 59 runs in 46 balls to seal Hyderabad’s chances of making the playoffs.
The dashing Aussie added 100 runs for the opening stand with Dhawan in 12.3 overs, which paved the way for a comfortable seven-wicket win for Sunrisers, who were chasing a stiff target of 161.
Dhawan also made a welcome return to form, before getting out for 50 in 39 balls.
In the end it was a clinical performance by Hyderabad who always looked comfortable as they knocked off the runs in 19.4 overs.
Both Sunrisers and RCB now have 10 points from 12 games, but Bangalore are a place ahead at fifth with a better net run-rate.
However, Kolkata’s win against Chennai meant they won’t be able to move into the top-four just on the basis of points.
It was Dhawan who attacked from the onset with some flowing cover drives and a hooked six off Varun Aaron. The 50 then up in the last over of the powerful for Sunrisers' best start of the tournament.
Warner then continued the charge before eventually falling to a fulltoss from Aaron but Naman Ojha (24) along with Aaron Finch (11 no) and captain Darren Sammy (10 no) ensured they crossed the line.
Earlier, RCB captain Virat Kohli scored his first half-century of the tournament this year with a superb knock of 67, around which Bangalore’s score of 160-6 was built after opting to bat first.
Kohli’s 67 came off 41 balls and he hit four boundaries and as many sixes, while AB de Villiers (29) and Yuvraj Singh (21) were the other main contributors.
However, it was another ultimately disappointing performance from Bangloare who have won just five of their 12 matches despite starting the tournament as one of the favourites.