Sunrisers Hyderabad lost yet another match on home ground on Saturday. A match, which was well in their control, was lost to visitors Lucknow Super Giants as Aiden Markram & co remained unsuccessful in defending a competitive total of 182 on the board. LSG’s Nicholas Pooran, who was bought at the IPL auction for staggering Rs 16 crore, made his mark with 44 off 13 blitz that helped Lucknow to solidify their playoff chances. With this win, LSG are back in top four of the IPL 2023 points table. Apart from Pooran, Prerak Mankad’s 64 off 45 deliveries and Marcus Stoinis’ 40 off 25 kept LSG in the hunt.
The chase by Pooran and Mankad looks miraculous because of how poorly LSG were placed during the match. After 12 overs, LSG were two down with 75 runs on the board. This was way too far from what SRH were at that time. The home team was 115/3 after 12 overs. Then came Stoinis and got some quick runs for LSG. After he (40 off 25) walked back to dugout, LSG looked under pressure. But then came hurricane named Nicky Pooran! He came, saw and won! While SRH hits just eight maximums in their entire innings, Stoinis and Pooran both smashed 7! This is a special win for LSG as they are not known to be successful in chasing target. The win at Hyderabad is their fifth in last 14 occasions.
While the explosive innings by Pooran is talk of town but it was Saurashtra’s Mankad, who despite his struggles during the middle overs, kept LSG ticking. It was a pep-talk during the strategic time-out from Super Giants mentor Gautam Gambhir that transformed Mankad’s batting. Mankad showed terrific intent and slammed a super six of T Natarajan after the game resumed after time-out.
Earlier, Krunal Pandya produced a couple of back-to-back high quality deliveries before Heinrich Klaasen and Abdul Samad took Sunrisers Hyderabad to a competitive 182 for 6 after opting to bat first. Not known as a big turner of the ball, LSG skipper Krunal (2/24 in 4 overs) bowled two identical classical left-arm orthodox deliveries, which had drift as well as enough turn to hoodwink Sunrisers skipper Aiden Markram (28 off 20 balls) and Glenn Phillips (0).
(With PTI inputs)