What a nail-biting encounter this was! If a cricket match could ever be used as a perfect definition of a see-saw, it has to be this game. At the start of the match, some tight bowling from Pune gave them the upper hand. However, the visitors went into the dressing room full of confidence after a blazing finish from their batsmen.
Some good batting from Pune’s top order changed the momentum once again before the defending champions pulled it back through disciplined bowling and fielding. But, in the end, it was MS Dhoni’s moment as he finished the game in the last ball once again to win some much-needed points for his team.
In a match full of memorable moments, we’ve narrowed it down to just 5 that don't fade away, quite like the Axe Signature range of body perfumes:
#1 Consistent Warner
It is amazing how David Warner consistently performs in the Indian Premier League season after season. This is a man that is not only batting well, but is leading his team quite beautifully as well. Against a formidable bowling line-up, Warner showed the character that he possesses.
Despite not playing at his usual pace, Warner anchored the innings for Sunrisers Hyderabad. His knock of 43 off 40 balls might not be the usual T20 innings one expects from the Australian, but it was the foundations over which Hyderabad built their innings.
#2 Moises Henriques’ timely slogging
Washington Sundar’s beautiful bowling at the beginning of the innings saw the Sunrisers batsmen playing it cautiously. David Warner was forced to play a slow, yet steady innings, but it was Moises Henriques’ vengeful hitting in the end that got the Hyderabad team to a challenging total.
He came in at number 4 and smashed his way to a 28-ball 55, an innings that helped Hyderabad reach 176 - a total which was short by just a few runs.
#3 Rahul Tripathi joins the ‘players to watch out’ pool
Ever since the inception of the Indian Premier League, many young talented Indian players have been unearthed. The likes of Ravindra Jadeja and Rohit Sharma shot themselves to glory through the IPL.
Right now, Nitish Rana is making a fine case for himself and it seems as though another Indian batsman has burst onto the scene: Rahul Tripathi. The Ranchi batsman played a fine innings of 59 in just 41 balls and looked as if he would take his side to the target. However, he was outsmarted by some…
#4 Rashid Khan magnificence
Who would have thought that a war-torn non-cricketing country could produce such a talented spinner? Last year, Sunrisers Hyderabad signed the best foreign bowling export when they acquired the services of Mustafizur Rahman. This year, the Sunrisers seem to have repeated history with their latest signing, Rashid Khan – who is fast becoming the best foreign bowler in the tournament.
Against Rising Pune Supergiant, he showed some great presence of mind to get the in-form Rahul Tripathi run out while also getting the priceless wicket of Pune’s best batsman, Steven Smith. He ended the match with figures of 4-0-17-1 and could have sealed the match for his side, if not for…
#5 Dhoni’s perfectly timed knock
It has been a long time since we have seen the former Captain Cool go gung-ho at the bowlers. However, against the Sunrisers Hyderabad, we saw the version of MSD that made so many fans fall in love with him.
When Rahul Tripathi was run out, Pune needed 79 runs in 6.5 overs. As the match progressed, the asking rate just kept shooting upwards. All hope almost faded when Ben Stokes fell, but Dhoni had other plans. He smashed his way past the Hyderabad bowlers to score 61 runs in 34 balls and win the game for his team with a last-ball boundary. Some things never really change!