IPL 2018: Rajpoot’s fifer restricts Hyderabad to 132/6

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) Sunrisers Hyderabad failed to recover from the early blows from medium pacer Ankit Rajpoot (5/14) as Kings XI Punjab restricted the hosts to a paltry 132/6 in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Thursday.

Ankit ran through the home batting line-up bagging the key wickets of skipper Kane Williamson (0), Shikhar Dhawan (11) and Wriddhiman Saha (6) off his first three overs before returning to pick Manish Pandey (54) and Mohammad Nabi (4) in the final over of the innings.

Put in to bat, the hosts were saved from the blushes by Pandey’s fighting 51-ball knock, laced with three fours and a six after Rajpoot reduced them to 27/3 in the first five overs.

Rajpoot had almost jolted the hosts with the wicket of Shakib Al Hasan (28 off 29 balls; 4×3) on the very next ball only if Andrew Tye hadn’t missed a dolly at mid-wicket.

Shakib once again got a reprieve in the next over from left-armer Barinder Sran, who induced a thick edge off to third man, only for the umpires to call it a front foot no-ball.

With the hosts finding themselves at a precarious 27/3, Shakib and Manish Pandey survived a few close calls, including a run-out attempt, to take the Sunrisers’ to 57/3 midway into the innings.

Ravichandran Ashwin’s ploy to employ part-timer Manoj Tiwary misfired as the leg-spinner leaked 10 runs from his only over, forcing the Punjab skipper to bring his 17-year-old mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman into the attack.

Mujeeb responded in style by ending the 52-run fourth wicket stand, when he induced the Bangladeshi skipper with a wrong ‘un to be comfortably caught by Mayank Agarwal at the mid-wicket fence.

Shakib’s dismissal brought in the experienced Yusuf Pathan (21 not out off 19; 4×1, 6×1) who was forced to curb his naturally aggressive approach by the Punjab bowlers, even as the home side managed to reach the three figures in 16.3 overs.

Sensing emergency, Manish tried to change gears and got a life on 46 when he was dropped at deep mid-wicket by Mayank off Tye.

Manish managed to take advantage of the life by sending Tye’s slower one to the extra cover boundary and raise the second joint slowest 50 for the Sunrisers but the joy was short-lived as the right-hander fell prey to Rajpoot in the final over of the innings.

Afghan all-rounder Nabi then joined Pathan for the final two deliveries but couldn’t trouble the scorers much as Rajpoot had the last laugh to end the innings at 132.

Brief Scores: Sunrisers Hyderabad 132/6 (Manish Pandey 54, Shakib Al Hasan 28; Ankit Rajpoot 5/14) vs Kings XI Punjab.