Kane Williamson in the runs again as Sunrisers qualify for IPL playoffs

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli

Sunrisers, who lead the table with 18 points from 11 games, showed tonight that they could not just defend small totals but also chase down stiff targets.

Shakib Al Hasan proved to be the pick of the Sunrisers bowlers with figures of 2 for 27 from his four overs.

Rishabh Pant heroics were not enough to script victory for Delhi Daredevils.

It was the bowling that had won Sunrisers Hyderabad a majority of their games in the Indian Premier League 2018. Pant completed his century off 56 balls when he hit Kaul for a boundary in the penultimate over.

Earlier opting to bat, Delhi Daredevils posted a challenging 187 for 5 in stipulated 20 overs.

Pant left the field with his head held high, however, having destroyed arguably the tournament's best bowling attack to register the highest IPL score by an Indian player. After being involved in two run outs, it needed something special from the Delhi wicketkeeper to make up for it.

The other two wickets that fell to Delhi's disappointment (Shreyas Iyer and Harshal Patel) were rather self-inflicted on account of the miscommunication that ensued - with Pant on both occasions - as the players tried to run-between-the-wickets only to fail miserably. Pant hit some unorthodox lap shot in the last over bowled by India's pace spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar, scooping the ball over third-man for couple of sixers."I saw him (Pant) yesterday". Pant's knock was studded with 5 fours and 4 maximums.

SRH coach Tom Moody had insisted that "players like Shikhar Dhawan don't just disappear off the face of Earth" on the eve of the game and the Delhi star chose the ideal setting to roar back to form.

After Pant's fearless innings on Thursday, Ganguly had taken to Twitter to draw comparisons between the 20-year-old and the knock that Brendon McCullum had carved for KKR in Bangalore in 2008.

Apart from Pant's exploits, Delhi failed as a batting unit.

It was his sixth half century and took his tournament tally to 493.

Their unbroken partnership for the second wicket of 176 runs is the highest in the IPL this year. That was only the second six of his innings, but he proceeded to blast five more in the final overs, including taking Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1-51) for three in a row to end the innings in emphatic fashion.

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