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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Natarajan Or Harshal? Who Has Your Vote?

Natarajan Or Harshal? Who Has Your Vote?

By NORMA ASTRID GODINHO
May 20, 2024 08:13 IST
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Fiery knocks from Abhishek Sharma and Heinrich Klaasen guided the Sunrisers Hyderabad to chase down 215 against Punjab Kings with five balls to spare at the Rajiv Gandhi international stadium on Sunday.

The sea of runs meant the bowlers were treated with disdain. Only two bowlers stood out from Sunday's game.

T Natarajan

On a flat track, the batters ruled the roost. Prabhsimran Singh, Atharva Taide and Riley Rossouw went after the bowling, smoking experienced Pat Cummins and Bhuvneshwar Kumar for big runs.

Natarajan has had a fantastic season thus far and although he was hit for 11 runs in his opening over, he ensured to make amends.

He came back nicely in the second over -- he struck off the very first ball to break Punjab's 97-run opening stand, having Taide hole out straight to backward point for 46. The over produced a wicket, conceding just 2 runs.

In his next two overs he gave 11 runs and 9 runs respectively but took out Shashank Singh in the 19th over to help keep Punjab to under 220. He bowled the slower balls to keep the batters guessing every now and then by changing his lengths and other variations.

Although he finished with 2 for 33, he was the best SRH bowler as he went for just 8.25 runs per over.

Expect more from Natarajan in the play-offs.

Harshal Patel

Harshal  

As Abhishek Sharma and Co. took down Punjab Kings bowlers, no one was spared.

Arshdeep Singh got Travis Head early but SRH found their footing soon as Abhishek and Rahul Tripathi kept the runs coming. Arshdeep and Rishi Dhawan getting spanked for big runs.

Captain Jitesh Sharma then handed the ball to Harshal Patel hoping to do what he does best -- breaking partnerships.

Harshal was smashed for two sixes and a four in his opening over but he broke the stand, having the scalp of Tripathi, who misread the slower ball, miscued and was caught by Arshdeep at mid off.

Harshal, like all his other bowling partners, were taken to the cleaners. He gave 33 runs and a wicket off his first two overs.

He was brought back into the attack in the 14th over and he struck again, taking out a well-settled Nitish Reddy for 37, breaking another partnership.

Harshal gave just 7 runs in his last over and finished with figures of 2 for 49. Although expensive, he make two big breakthroughs to drag the match to the final over.

With 24 wickets at an average of 19.87 and an economy rate of 9.73, with the best bowling figures of 3/15, Harshal levelled with Australian pacer Andrew Tye to become the player with the highest number of wickets for the franchise in a single edition of the Indian Premier League.

Natarajan or Harshal? Who has your vote?

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NORMA ASTRID GODINHO

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