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Top Performer: Ever Reliable Bairstow!

By HARISH KOTIAN
April 22, 2021 06:48 IST
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Jonny Bairstow

IMAGE: Sunrisers Hyderabad star Jonny Bairstow hits out. Photograph: BCCI
 

Jonny Bairstow hit an unbeaten half-century to help Sunrisers Hyderabad end their losing run and register their first win in IPL 2021.

Having started the tournament with three defeats in a row, Sunrisers finally registered an emphatic nine-wicket victory over Punjab Kings in Chennai on Wednesday.

After messing up easy run chases in their first three games, the onus was on the Sunrisers batsmen to ensure victory after the bowlers had done a brilliant job to bowl out Punjab for a below-par 120.

Openers Jonny Bairstow and David Warner took the responsibility to lay the perfect platform with a solid opening partnership.

Captain Warner started off the innings by hitting Mohammed Shami for a four in the opening over as Bairstow lofted spinner Fabian Allen for a boundary and a six in the next over.

The two batsmen hit a boundary each off Shami in the third over before Bairstow pulled medium pacer Moises Henriques for a six over fine leg in the fifth over.

Sunrisers were sitting pretty as the openers put on 50 in the first six overs of the Powerplay.

The scoring rate dipped in the middle overs as Warner and Bairstow looked to bat steadily without taking any risks.

Warner perished for 37, caught at deep midwicket off Allen, but Bairstow kept the Punjab bowlers at bay.

Sunrisers didn't hit a single boundary for nearly seven overs after Warner departed as the experienced Bairstow and Kane Williamson focussed only on singles and twos to keep the scoreboard moving.

Bairstow broke the shackles, pulling part-time spinner Deepak Hooda for a four to bring up his fifty from 48 balls -- his slowest ever in the IPL.

He pulled pacer Arshdeep Singh for a six in the next over as Sunrisers eased to victory with seven balls to spare.

Bairstow finished unbeaten on a good 63 from 56 balls, hitting three fours and three sixes, to help Sunrisers bag their first points of the season.

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HARISH KOTIAN / Rediff.com
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Indian Premier League - 2021

Indian Premier League - 2021