Hyderabad: Jonny Bairstow and David Warner continued their stellar run at the top as they powered Sunrisers Hyderbad to a nine-wicket win over struggling Kolkata Knight Riders in an IPL encounter here Sunday.
Chasing a target of 160, Warner struck 67 off 38 balls hitting three fours and five sixes while Englishman Bairstow punished the hapless KKR attack with seven boundaries and four maximums in his unbeaten knock of 80 off 43 balls.
Speaking after the victory, Jonny Bairstow credited his bowlers for restricting KKR batters. “The way they got off to that start, the bowlers did well to peg them back. Huge credit to our guys, it could’ve got away from us. Could’ve got to 200. When we came out to bat, the pitch slowed up. Expected it to be slightly quicker than that tonight.”
Speaking about the opening partnership with Wrner he said, “It’s good fun. He’s a great bloke to bat with. We run well between the wickets. When he gets off to start like that, it’s just a case of giving him the strike.’ He also defended his team’s under-firing middle order and said that they have got some quality players out there. There’s been a lot of chat about the middle order, probably unfairly so. We’ve got some quality players in that middle order who haven’t been able to spend some time in the middle which is a good thing because it means we’ve been doing our job.”
Kane Williamson, the skipper of SRH said “It was a complete performance. It is a tough tournament and you need to adapt. Let’s hope they continue the winning momentum. Everyone is trying to play their roles. To take nothing away from the first half, the bowlers did really well.’ He also credited the openers for their stellar batting and said that they will be missed at the end as both will go for national duty. It has been a pleasure to watch them bat. We know that we would come in as a middle order when needed. They (Bairstow and Warner) are gonna be big losses. They are world class players and they will be missed at the back end.”
Losing captain Dinesh Kathik said his team’s bowling and fielding let them down. “Our bowling has been off colour in the tournament. Our fielding needs a lot of improvement too. On Kuldeep Yadav being kept out of the playing eleven Karthik said his slump in form prompted Kolkata Knight Riders team management to drop him from the playing XI against Sunrisers Hyderabad barely six weeks before the World Cup. The wrist spinner has only got four wickets in nine IPL games at an economy rate of 8.66 and KKR dropped him in their 10th game even though his replacement, K C Cariappa, fared worse, giving away 34 runs in two overs.
“A form issue with (Kuldeep) – as he couldn’t stand up for us in the last game. We had to give him a break and get him back fresh,’ said Karthik. I think 160 was a par score on this wicket if we’d
bowled well. I think they (Warner and Bairstow) batted really well but our fielding cost us. And after that dropped catch (off Prithviraj), he (Bairstow) came at us all guns blazing. A wicket of
Bairstow would have felt better, feel for the guy (Yarra Prithviraj). We have been outplayed in this game,’ Karthik said.