Hyderabad: Defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad continued their good start in the tenth season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) by beating Gujarat Lions by nine wickets at the Rajiv Gandhi international stadium in Hyderabad.
Rashid Khan (19/3) and David Warner (76* runs off 45 ball) starred for Hyderabad as Gujarat succumbed to their second huge defeat on the trot. Moises Henriques too chipped in with a blistering half-century, which was his second in as many games in the ongoing tournament.
Chasing a modest target of 136, openers David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan were welcomed to the batting crease by surprise opening bowler Suresh Raina. Raina wanted to bring in some variety and the move raised a few eyebrows.
While Raina's first over went event-less, things took a drastic turn in the second one. Dhawan hit one and Warner slammed two maximums straight down to the ground to get the Hyderabad innings rolling.
However, Shikhar Dhawan fell on the first ball of the next over to Praveen Kumar. But there was no stopping Warner as he continued the onslaught from the other end.
Moises Henriques too joined the party by hitting back to back boundaries off the bowling of Dhawal Kulkarni in sixth over.
Henriques too kept his good run of form going as he notched up his well-deserved half-century.
In the end, Warner ended Gujarat's misery by hitting a huge six to get Hyderabad over the line in just 15.3 overs to highlight the gulf in class between the two side.
Warner's innings included six fours and four towering sixes, while Henriques was equally destructible with six boundaries of his own.
Earlier, young Afghan spinner Rashid Khan demolished the Gujarat Lions batting line-up as Raina's men where restricted to a paltry 135/7 in their designated 20 overs.
Opener Jason Roy gave Gujarat the perfect start by thumping five boundaries in quick successions. The Englishman slammed two boundaries each in the overs of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Bipul Sharma to make his intentions clear early on.
Rashid could have got Raina's wicket as well on the next delivery, but the catch was dropped by skipper David Warner who was fielding in first slip.
In the next over, Bhuvi dismissed the dangerous-looking Roy for 31 and that stemmed the flow of runs for Gujarat.
18-year-old Rashid further dented the Gujarat's innings by dismissing Aaron Finch for 3 runs. Gujarat's skipper Suresh Raina became Rashid's third scalp of the day as the Lions lost their fourth for just 57 runs in 9 overs.
Dinesh Karthik and Dwayne Smith put on a decent partnership to steady the Gujarat innings. The West Indian played the role of aggressor and scored few boundaries off the bowling of Ashish Nehra and Moises Henriques to keep the scoreboard ticking.
Bhuvi finally got the better of Smith as the the right-hander was dismissed for 37 runs and with that, the 56-run partnership also came to an end.
Nehra removed Karthik for 30 and thus ended Gujarat's hopes of a late onslaught. 13 runs of the penultimate over helped Gujarat huff and puff to 135 in 20 overs which proved to be too less later on.