Kane Williamson (89 from 51 balls) starred for the Sunrisers Hyderabad as the defending champions beat the Delhi Daredevils by 15 runs at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Playing in his first game of the season, Williamson looked in total control from the word go, pacing his innings well and choosing to hit the big shots at the right time. He slammed six fours and five sixes in an eye-catching knock.
The New Zealand skipper found support from Shikhar Dhawan (70 from 50 balls) and the duo went on to put on a 136-run stand for the second wicket after the Sunrisers lost skipper David Warner for just four.
Dhawan’s first fifty of the season came at the right time for the hosts who had to endure a rare failure from Warner.
A feature of the Williamson-Dhawan partnership was their running between the wickets as they constantly put the Delhi fielders under pressure, taking quick singles and converting ones into twos with ease.
The Sunrisers would end their innings on 191-4 with Chris Morris the pick of the Delhi bowlers, picking up figures of 4-26 from his four overs.
In reply, Sam Billings started on a positive note but his innings was cut short on just 13 by IPL debutant Mohammed Siraj.
Sanju Samson and Karun Nair got together at the crease and the pair seemed to have been building a match-winning partnership until a run-out saw the end of the latter’s innings, ending the partnership on 71.
In the same Yuvraj Singh over, youngster Rishabh Pant was dismissed for a golden duck and from there on, it was always going to be an uphill task for the visitors.
Set batsman Samson (42 from 33 balls) soon perished as Siraj picked up his second wicket of the day.
Shreyas Iyer (50 from 31 balls) and Angelo Mathews (31 from 23 balls) rallied, but some brilliant death overs from Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Siddarth Kaul was enough for the Sunrisers to register their fourth win of the season.
The Delhi think-tank will regret their decision to not send Morris higher up the order as the South African, who has been in good striking form with the bat, faced zero deliveries during the chase.
With this win, Warner’s side climb up to second in the table, with eight points from six matches. The Daredevils find themselves fourth with four points.
Sunrisers Hyderabad 191-4, 20 overs [Williamson 89, Dhawan 70, Morris 4-26] beat Delhi Daredevils 176-5, 20 overs [Iyer 50, Samson 42, Siraj 2-39] by 15 runs.
Man of the Match – Kane Williamson