Wrapping it up

If RCB with Virat, ABD, Quinton de Kock and Baz are considered the batting powerhouse in this IPL, Sunrisers with Bhuvi, Rashid, Sandeep, Sid Kaul, Nabi and Shakib are the best bowling side. For the second match in a row, without Bhuvneshwar, Sunrisers have defended a sub-140 total.

Gayle and Rahul got the Kings XI off to a great start scoring 53 in seven overs, chasing 133. But once Rashid Khan broke that partnership, things went haywire for Punjab. Gayle got out soon after. Then, most of the middle order collapsed trying to clear the boundary when there was still enough deliveries left. With the asking rate soaring and the bowlers bowling tight, there wasn’t much that the lower order could do.

Kings XI would also rue the missed chances. They were sloppy in the field. Manish Pandey, who made the game’s only fifty, was given three chances.

Sunrisers, it seems, have mastered the art of defending low scores. But they can’t give their bowlers so little to defend all the time. Batting remains a concern. If they can fix that, they’ll be a complete side. For now, they have moved to the second place in the points table behind CSK.

Ankit Rajpoot, for his five-wicket haul, is the man of the match. Unfortunate to have ended up on the losing side after a spell like that. He says he got some assistance from the pitch and it was his night.

Williamson: We hadn’t really played on surfaces where 180 was par. We want more from our batting unit, but often only 15-20 more. 145 would have been competitive here. But Kings XI bowled well to restrict us. Our bowlers fought hard, and though they ran away in the Powerplay, we knew our spinners could pull things back. It’s nice to defend these totals, but we want to be smarter with the bat. It’s not about getting 180 always, get 145, 155 and we can use our bowling to put them under pressure. The bowlers have been operated really smartly. And our fielding has been great. Fortunate with our bowling depth. The guys have been fantastic, the way they’ve managed to fight, a lot of credit to the bowlers, the lengths they hit to get their wickets.

Rashid: It was a tough challenge for me after two bad games against Chennai and Kings XI. It’s part of cricket. The coaching staff’s support was amazing. They just told me to enjoy myself. I am ready to bowl any time the skipper needs me. Either in the Poweprlay, middle or end. Getting Rahul’s wicket is always a pleasure. He’s a class player, he’s one of my favourites. The plan was to bowl wicket to wicket and vary the pace. Gives us confidence defending low totals, we can defend anything. They guys did a very good job in the fielding department as well. Bowling was very good in the last few overs.

Ashwin: From where we were, we should have put this game away. It’s disappointing. It was not the greatest of wickets, the ball stuck in it. It can happen in this format, we’ve been on a roll, but these kinds of things happen in the IPL. We let ourselves down in the field as well, we could have been chasing 20-25 runs. Fielding is something we need to address. Always difficult to catch under lights, but there are no excuses. We are professionals, we have to work harder to get back in. Rashid bowled very well, you have to expect it from him and on a wicket like this, he is a handful.

WICKET! And, Sunrisers pull off another heist! Basil Thampi hits Ankit Rajpoot’s middle stump. What a win after putting just 132 on board and after Kings XI got off to a solid start. Kings were 55/0 in the eighth over. After the openers departed, the rest of the batsmen imploded. And they didn’t have a partnership going

WICKET! The required rate is rocketing up, the wickets are falling around him. So, Ashwin has no other go but to take risks. But he’s not very good with the big hits. Tries to hit Rashid Khan over the cover, instead hands a catch to the rival skipper Williamson inside the circle. Sunrisers 101/9 in 17.2 overs.

After 17 overs, Kings XI 100/8 (Ashwin 4, Rajpoot 1) WICKET! Kings XI are imploding. Barinder Sran struggles with the bat. Tries to get to the other end at least and bring his skipper, Ashwin, back on strike. But poor of him to run after edging the ball to the slips. Ashwin sends him back. Meanwhile, Saha runs across, takes the ball and hits the stumps. Just three runs conceded in that over by Sid Kaul.

After 16 overs, Kings XI 97/7 (Ashwin 3, Sran 1) WICKET! Another one! A double-wicket over for Sandeep Sharma. Andrew Tye looks like he had no clue to play that knuckle ball that headed straight and rapped his pads. Tye reviews it. Looks like it might jut go outside leg stump... no, it slips the edge of the leg stump. Umpire’s call. Tye has to go.

WICKET! Oh dear! What are the Kings XI doing here. They are making this total look far tougher than it actually is. Manoj Tiwary, like some of the previous dismissed batsmen, thinks he can get away with a lofted high risk shot. Williamson takes the catch at short midwicket. Sunrisers are favourites to win this now. Sunrisers 92/6 in 15.3 overs. Ashwin’s still in the crease.

WICKET! Aaron Finch decided to go after Shakib. Connects the first ball – a slower one – and sends it a few rows past long on. He tries to repeat the same. This time he can’t clear Pandey. Finch has to depart. Sunrisers in deep trouble. For they are 88/5 in 14.2 overs.

After 14 overs, Kings XI 82/4 (Tiwary 0, Finch 2) WICKET! Rashid Khan has brought this game alive, Just like he did against Mumbai Indians. He’s trapped Karun Nair with a googly. Just two runs conceded off the over. Kings XI in trouble now.

WICKET! Oh no! What has Mayank Agarwal done here?! Agarwal tries to hit Shakib out of the park 56 required off 48. That shot wasn’t required. Maybe the dot balls from the previous overs got to him. Kings XI need a cool head here to take them over the line. There’s no need to panic. Sunrisers 77/3 after 12.1 overs.

After 11 overs, Kings XI 77/2 (Agarwal 12, Nair 10) Another economical over by Rashid Khan. Just four off it. The Kings XI wouldn’t risk trying to go after Rashid. They are happy to knock the singles and defend against him.

After 11 overs, Kings XI 73/2 (Agarwal 10, Nair 8) Sunrisers have slowed things down after the quick wickets of Rahul and Gayle. Sid Kaul gives away just six away in this over. This is a good opportunity for Karun Nair and Mayank Agarwal to prove that Kings XI batting is not heavily dependent on their openers. They can get to the target without taking too many risks. Kings XI are keeping up with the required rate.

WICKET! Big moment in the match for Thampi and Sunrisers. They have got the big man Gayle. Thamp bowls a quick bouncer. Gayle plays an awkward pull. The ball raises high and Thampi runs forward to take the catch himself. Hyderabad’s crowd is going crazy. Sunrisers: 57/2 after 8.2 overs.

WICKET! And, Rashid strikes. What a delivery. Dips in the air and pitches on middle and leg line. Rahul gets forward to defend it. But the ball deviates and hits his off stump. That’s the breakthrough that SRH was looking for. Sunrisers 55/1 in 7.5 overs.

Ah, Rashid Khan into the attack. Gayle took him apart the last time they met. Who will win the contest tonight?

After 7 overs, Kings XI 53/0 (Rahul 31, Gayle 22): Chris Gayle brings up SRH’s fifty with a 92-metre hit off Thampi over long on.

After 6 overs, Kings XI 44/0 (Rahul 29, Gayle 15): Sid Kaul starts his spell with a nine-run over. Comprised one extra-ordinary boundary to the long-on by Rahul and an uncharacteristic Gayle boundary between third man and point.

After 5 overs, Kings XI 35/0 (Rahul 24, Gayle 11): Another tidy over by Sandeep. Just five conceded off it. But the over also featured a regal cover drive by Rahul – a shot that serves as proof that he’s in great touch. He leans forward, meets the ball in the sweet spot and the ball careens to the boundary. He’s looking great tonight.

After 4 overs, Kings XI 30/0 (Rahul 19, Gayle 11): All eyes are on Gayle. But don’t count Rahul out. He hits a six and two fours in that over by Nabi. All played with exquisite timing and he places it well, too.

After 3 overs, Kings XI 14/0 (Rahul 4, Gayle 10): Sandeep Sharma keeps it tight. Three balls on the ‘good length’, that nagging outside off line. Then three different deliveries including the knuckle ball that he bowls so well. He’s kept these dangerous men quiet so far. But Sunrisers are desperately hoping for a wicket.

Why Sunrisers need to get one... no, both the openers out early to have a chance of winning this game:-

After 2 over, Kings XI 10/0 (Rahul 2, Gayle 8): First ball defended. Second ball: full, on the off-stump, what does Gayle do? Skips down the ground and waves that big blade of his to clear the ball over the sight-screen. The big man also survived a stumping chance off the last ball.

Spin introduced early. Nabi into the attack...

After 1 over, Kings XI 2/0 (Rahul 1, Gayle 1): Quiet over. Chris Gayle gets beaten, then defends, then gets to the other end off the last ball.

After one ball, Kings XI 0/0 Fuller delivery on the off-stump line, Rahul defends.

Sandeep Sharma with the new ball (has got Gayle 4 times out of 7 in the IPL)...

Second innings starts... KL Rahul walks out with the Universe Boss. The match will be over if any of them, especially Gayle, gets going. For this is how often he hits a six in IPL:-

Apart from Rajpoot’s brilliant spell, the other talking points of the first half were Kings XI’s poor fielding display (they could have restricted Sunrisers below 100 had they held on to their catches) and Pandey’s scratchy half-century. He needs to get better to lend more stability to the Sunrisers line up. Yet again, we saw them struggle after the departure of Williamson.

For the second straight time, Sunrisers bowlers have to defend a low total. They did that against Mumbai. If they can get Gayle and Rahul within the Powerplay, they are in with a chance to pull off another impressive win.

Sunrisers finish at 132/6 (Pathan 21): Brilliant last over by Rajpoot. He finishes with a five-wicket haul (5/14). His best in T20s. The season’s best bowling figures so far. Rajpoot wrecked the top order by picking up three wickets. Came back to get rid of Pandey with an unplayable yorker. Nabi fell off the last ball of the over when he tried to clear long off.

After 19 overs, Sunrisers: 126/4 (Pandey 53, Pathan 21): Fifty for Pandey. Comes after 48 balls and some 100,000 dropped chances (okay, he had three chances). He brings it up with a boundary – off a wider, full delivery by Tye. Nine runs off that over. Just the 10 fours and two sixes so far. Compare that with yesterday’s game, where 33 sixes were hit!

After 18 overs, Sunrisers: 117/4 (Pandey 48, Pathan 17): Atrocious fielding by Kings XI so far. They could have restricted to a lower score had they taken their chances and didn’t fumble before stopping the ball. Tiwary was stationed at midwicket expecting a slog by Pathan off Ashwin. But Tiwary misses and the ball falls over for a six. Ashwin keeps a straight face.

After 17 overs, Sunrisers: 99/4 (Pandey 47, Pathan 5): Hundred up for the Sunrisers. Finally! And, Manish Pandey gets another left off the last ball. Mayank Agarwal did well to get underneath the ball but it goes between his hands.

After 16 overs, Sunrisers: 99/4 (Pandey 43, Pathan 4): Superb spell by Mujeeb Ur Rahman. He finishes it without conceding a boundary. Sunrisers still haven’t crossed 100. Yusuf Pathan hasn’t been in form and is clearly struggling here.

After 15 overs, Sunrisers: 97/4 (Pandey 43, Pathan 2): Some impetus for the Sunrisers. Pandey shifts gears. Hits Ashwin for a four and a sixe. Ashwin’s action is difficult to pick. He’s cleverly mixing up his off-breaks with the occasional leg-spin.

After 14 overs, Sunrisers: 83/4 (Pandey 30, Pathan 0): WICKET! A wicket is bound to fall when the run-rate hasn’t gone past four overs in a T20 game. Shakib Al Hasan tries to slog the ball beyond deep-midwicket. He doesn’t time it well, the ball goes Agarwal. Another over with no boundaries for Sunrisers.

After 13 overs, Sunrisers: 76/3 (Pandey 27, Shakib 27): FINALLY, a boundary. Shakib pulls a slow, short ball of Tye to the long leg area for four. The next ball, a full toss, he misses.

After 12 overs, Sunrisers: 67/3 (Pandey 25, Shakib 20): Sunrisers are trudging along at less than six runs an over. Bowlers have dominated this game so far. And, Mujeeb Ur Rahman makes sure that Sunrisers’ boundary drought continues. A quickfire knock needed for the Sunrisers to get close to 150.

After 11 overs, Sunrisers: 62/3 (Pandey 21, Shakib 19): Sunrisers haven’t scored a boundary in the last six overs. Just five runs scored by Pandey and Shakib in that over bowled by Andrew Tye.

Meanwhile here’s Tiwary’s bowling action:

After 10 overs, Sunrisers: 57/3 (Pandey 17, Shakib 18): Shakib and Pandey happy to rotate the strike and take singles in that over by Mujeeb Ur Rahman. Just three runs conceded in that over. They need to increase the scoring rate, considering that KXIP have a strong batting line up.

After 9 overs, Sunrisers: 54/3 (Pandey 15, Shakib 17): Ashwin bowls his second over. Just four runs conceded. The first nine overs, Kings XI were in command. But it could have been a lot worse for Sunrisers as Sran got a wicket off a no ball and put down a couple of catches. Can Shakib and Pandey revive the Sunrisers innings.

We’ll find out after the time out.

After 8 overs, Sunrisers: 50/3 (Pandey 12, Shakib 16) Ashwin brings on Tiwary. Very interesting bowling action. Very Kedar Jadhav-like. Gives away eight runs an over. Perphaps the least eventful over of the night so far.

After 7 overs, Sunrisers: 40/3 (Pandey 10, Shakib 11) Solid start by the Kings XI skipper. Gives away just three runs in his first over. Manish Pandey survives a close run-out chance. Ashwin lost the ball while trying to hit the stumps.

After 6 overs, Sunrisers: 37/3 (Pandey 9, Shakib 9) Another wicket it looked like. Shakib Al Hasan top-edged Barinder Sran to third man. But Sran bowled a no-ball! Shakib hits two boundaries after that reprieve. He needs to capitalise and get a big one here for Sunrisers to put up a decent total.

WICKET! That’s the third one of the night for Ankit Rajpoot. Sunrisers are off to yet another poor start in this IPL. Saha gets out after trying to slog the ball straight, but it falls to Andrew Tye at midoff. After 4.5 overs, Sunrisers: 27/3.

After 4 overs, Sunrisers: 23/2 (Pandey 6, Saha 5) Oh, Ashwin drops a tough chance. He had to run back, after Pandey hit the ball in the air. Always tough to catch running backwards. Pandey’s wicket would have spelled serious trouble for the hosts.

WICKET! Another one for Rajpoot. Removes Dhawan. Sunrisers are in serious trouble here. Williamson and Dhawan have been their batting mainstays. He bowls an away going delivery, there’s a hint of movement and Dhawan nicks it to the slips. What a night Rajpoot’s having. Sunrisers: 16/2 after 2.2 overs.

After 2 overs, Sunrisers: 12/1 (Dhawan 7, Saha 4) A four each by Dhawan and Saha off Barinder Sran. But they need to get going. Williamson’s been, without a doubt, Sunrisers’ batting lynchpin. So, Saha and Dhawan need to bat well in the Powerplay.

WICKET! Early wicket! And, it’s that of Kane Williamson. Rajppot strikes early. The delivery, pitched outside off, kept rising and Williamson, who’s usually so good with timing, miscues it and the ball falls safely on Ashwin’s hands at midoff. Sunriser: 1/1 after 0.4 overs

After first ball, Sunrisers: 1/0: Shikhar Dhawan cuts a short, wide ball. Falls short of the third man.

And, we are about to start. Dhawan’s taking the strike. Ankit Rajpoot, man of the match in tKings XI’s last game, with the new ball.

07:42 pm Playing XI

Sunrisers: Dhawan, Williamson(C), Saha(W), Pandey, Shakib, Pathan, Nabi, Rashid, Thampi, Kaul, Sharma.

Kings XI: Rahul(W), Gayle, Agarwal, Nair, Finch, Tiwary, Ashwin(C), Tye, Sran, Rajpoot, Mujeeb.

07:35 pm Previous first innings totals at Hyderabad this season:-

125/9 by Rajasthan Royals

147/8 by Mumbai Indians

182/3 by Chennai Super Kings

Toss: Ashwin calls tails, tails it is. Kings XI will be bowling first on this wicket. Oh, oh, Gayle’s playing. Sunrisers are sticking to the same team. Which means Bhuvneshwar will be missin again.

Pitch report: Pommie Mbangwa reckons its a good pitch. There was enough grass on the pitch. Mbangwa thinks there will be good carry. Previous first innings scores at Hyderabad this tournament: 125/9, 147/8, 182/3.

07:14 pm Bhuvi-Gayle showdown? Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Chris Gayle were rested from their teams’ last game so they can recover from soreness. If they are good to go tonight, we are in for a blockbuster showdown when the big man takes strike when Bhuvneshwar has the new ball.

7:00 pm Good evening, folks! We are an hour away from the start of the second leg between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kings XI Punjab. Last time the sides met, Chris Gayle wreaked havoc on the reputed bowling force of the Sunrisers to win the game for them. This time, Ravichandran Ashwin and his boys will play at SRH’s den. And, Gayle isn’t certain to play. The Sunrisers, meanwhile, will be upbeat after defending just 118 runs against Mumbai at the Wankhede.