Sunrisers Hyderabad return to their winning ways with a 32-run win against Rajasthan Royals in Ahmedabad on Thursday. Catch the match as it happened here (Scorecard | Commentary | Points Table | Full Schedule):
23:44 (IST): So that's it from Ahmedabad and the next match is on Friday between Kings XI Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore which starts at 8 pm IST in Bangalore. (Read Preview)
23:42 (IST): "Since coming into T20s, I have improved a lot in the death overs. The seam position is my strength in the early overs," says man of the match Bhuvneshwar Kumar as he sports a modest smile.
23:41 (IST): "We didn't have too many runs, so i said it was up to us if we played like warriors or losers," says winning captain Shikhar Dhawan.
"The boys really responded really well. The wicket turned, especially Mishra turned the ball and also Karn," he added.
23:28 (IST): And that's it! Tambe skies a catch to Steyn and Irfan Pathan has his first wicket. Rajasthan are bowled out for 102 in 19.5 overs to give Hyderabad a 32-run win.
23:18 (IST): It's four wickets for Bhuvneshwar and Rajasthan are all set to lose this game. Rajasthan 91/9 in 18 overs, Target: 135.
23:15 (IST): Bhuvneshwar Kumar picks up two wickets in two balls as he gets rid of Faulkner and Bhatia, but is denied the hat-trick by Richardson. Hyderabad 89/8 in 17.2 overs, Target: 135.
23:06 (IST): Steve Smith is out for 22 after Irfan Pathan takes a good running catch off Dale Steyn and that could be the nail in the coffin for Rajasthan. Rajasthan 82/6 in 15.4 overs, Target: 135.
22:58 (IST): Stuart Binny is run out for 12 as David Warner's direct hit catches him short of his ground. Rajasthan 78/5 in 13.4 overs, Target: 135.
22:50 (IST): Amit Mishra appeals in vain for a caught behind against Stuart Binny. Mishra gives the batsman a harsh look followed by an earful. Rajasthan 73/4 in 13 overs, Target: 135.
22:38 (IST): Steven Smith survives a stumping chance after Naman Ojha misses the ball completely. Rajasthan 60/4 in 10 overs, Target: 135.
22:26 (IST): Moises Henriques snares Rajasthan skipper Shane Watson for 11. Watson gives an easy catch to Naman Ojha. Hyderabad 41/4 in 6.3 overs.
22:21 (IST): Karn Sharma lives up to his reputation as he bowls danger-man Sanju Samson for 16. Hyderabad 37/3 in 5.5 overs, Target: 135.
22:12 (IST): Dale Steyn shows why he is the best in the business. Gets Karun Nair for 12 and Rajasthan are in a spot of bother. Rajasthan 27/2 in 4 overs.
22:08 (IST): First six of the Rajasthan innings! Sanju Samson hits it high and handsome over the head of Dale Steyn in a superb display of batsmanship. Rajasthan 22/1 in 3.1 overs.
22:03 (IST): Dale Steyn's first over goes for nine runs as Sanju Smason and Karun Nair each pick up a boundary. Rajasthan 11/1 in 2 overs, Target: 135.
21:55 (IST): Bhuvneshwar Kumar draws first blood for Hyderabad as Rahane departs for a duck. Rajasthan 0/1 in 0.3 overs, Target: 135.
21:43 (IST): Shane Watson gets the second hat-trick of the Indian Premier League 2014. He joins teammate Pravin Tambe who achieved his feat against Kolkata Knight Riders. (Watson Takes Second Hat-Trick of IPL 7)
21:38 (IST): Irfan Pathan ends the innings on a high with a boundary. Hyderabad post 134/9 in their 20 overs, a total that gives their bowlers something to defend. Good bowling from Watson and Bhatia who took three wickets each.
21:35 (IST): Amit Mishra run out in bizarre fashion as it requires three throws at the stumps and it is Sanju Samson finally breaks the stumps. Hyderabad 129/9 in 19.4 overs.
21:31 (IST): Dale Steyn is run out for 9 as Sanju Samson hits the stumps off a wide delivery. Hyderabad 125/8 in 19.2 overs.
21:28 (IST): Dale Steyn backs away to get a valuable four runs off Kane Richardson. Hyderabad 120/7 in 18.2 overs.
21:18 (IST): It's a hat-trick for Shane Watson! He dismissed Dhawan with the final ball of his previous over and then took the wickets of Henriques and Karn Sharma off the first two balls of his current one. Hyderabad 106/7 in 16.2 overs.
21:00 (IST): Rajat Bhatia is proving to be a thorn in the side of Hyderabad as he snares Naman Ojha for 17. Hyderabad 89/5 in 12.5 overs.
20:55 (IST): Pravin Tambe gets the big fish! David Warner comes down the track and is stumped by Sanju Samson for just 6. Hyderabad 85/4 in 11.5 overs.
20:44 (IST): It's Rajat Bhatia once again! Lokesh Rahul goes for an expansive shot and sees his stumps shattered. Hyderabad 67/3 in 9 overs.
20:34 (IST): Aaron Finch hits a boundary off Rajat Bhatia but gets too ambitious next ball and gives an easy catch to Rahane at deep midwicket. Hyderabad 55/2 in 6.3 overs
20:30 (IST): Hyderabad make the most of the fielding restrictions as they have scored at a brisk rate and lost just one wicket. Hyderabad 50/1 in 6 overs.
20:22 (IST): Captain snares captain! Shane Watson bowls Shikhar Dhawan for 33 and another good start is squandered by the Hyderabad skipper. Hyderabad 37/1 in 4 overs.
20:10 (IST): Hyderabad looking to make the most of the fielding restrictions as Shikhar Dhawan smashes Dhawal Kulkarni for two boundaries. Hyderabad 19/0 in 2 overs.
20:04 (IST): Shikhar Dhawan gets Hyderabad off to a good start with two boundaries in the first over off Kane Richardson. Hyderabad 9/0 in 1 over.
19:58 (IST): The umpires are walking out into the middle as the players follow. The Rajasthan team comes out followed by the Hyderabad batsmen.
19:48 (IST): This match will see Moises Henriques make his debut for Sunrisers Hyderabad.
19:45 (IST): The teams are as follows:
Ajinkya Rahane, Karun Nair, Sanju Samson, Shane Watson, Stuart Binny, Steven Smith, James Faulkner, Rajat Bhatia, Pravin Tambe, Kane Richardson, Dhawal Kulkarni
Aaron Finch, Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, David Warner, Naman Ojha, Irfan Pathan, Moises Henriques, Karn Sharma, Dale Steyn, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Amit Mishra
19:36 (IST): Rajasthan skipper Shane Watson calls correctly and decides that he will bowl first.
Up against an outfit that is struggling to stay afloat, fancied Rajasthan Royals will look to consolidate their position in the pecking order when they lock horns with Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League on Thursday.
Rajasthan Royals staged a dramatic fightback to bow down Kolkata Knight Riders by 10 runs in their last match, while Sunrisers Hyderabad were overshadowed by Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Led by inspiring Australian all-rounder Shane Watson, Rajasthan are placed third in the points table with five wins and two reverses, while SRH are struggling to keep their chances alive in the competition. Watson has always been the key man in the RR set-up.
Young Karun Nair has shown promise at the top of the order and RR can expect a lot from him. 42-year-old leg-spinner Pravin Tambe continues to catch attention with his impressive performance, the last coming against KKR.
As far as Sunrisers Hyderabad are concerned, skipper Shikhar Dhawan will need to lead from the front. A good start is of paramount importance in this form of the game, and Dhawan knows it too well. (Read Full Preview)
ROYALS TRYING TO FORGET SPOT-FIXING SCANDAL
Rajasthan Royals CEO Raghu Iyer said there is still some time left before they win back the confidence of the sponsors following the last year's spot-fixing scandal.
"As far as fans are concerned, you have to go by the numbers flocking to the stadium. Overall, the crowd in the UAE was good and I am sure we will get good attendance in all our matches in our new home in Ahmedabad," he said.
"Last season, we played three games after the controversy and we still witnessed a packed house. So the cricket fans usually remain unaffected but the sponsors require communication which is being done and action (on spot-fixing) which will be taken," added Iyer, who has been the team's CEO since the start of the IPL in 2008.
Royals had 18 sponsors (10 jersey sponsors, 8 partners) last year and the number remains same this year with one less name on the team jersey.
"Some of our sponsors have stayed away this year. May be they have taken a break for a year and will come back next year," said Iyer.
The team's co-owner Raj Kundra's name was also dragged in the IPL scandal but betting allegations against him are yet to be proved.
The revelations of last season has ensured the security cover around the teams is much bigger this time. (Read Full Story)
DRAVID IS THE MAN BEHIND THE SCENES
Rajasthan Royals batsman Karun Nair, who fashioned the team's emphatic win over Delhi Daredevils in the Indian Premier League 2014, says encouragement from captain Shane Watson and mentor Rahul Dravid is helping him perform as an opener.
With Dravid now watching the action from the sidelines, Nair has been batting alongside Ajinkya Rahane at the top.
The Karnataka batsman's unbeaten 73 off 50 balls not only ensured the team chase Daredevils' 152 for five with ease, the solid knock could help him establish his place in the Rajasthan playing eleven.
"There is always pressure when you have got quality batsmen waiting in the dug-out. I was looking to give myself little more time in the middle and Watto and the support staff backed me to do well. That really helped," Nair said of his effort.
"Even Rahul [Dravid] just told me to play with confidence and take more time at the centre. He has been of great help," said the 22-year-old, who last year scored three hundreds for Karnataka in his debut Ranji Trophy season, helping his team win its first Ranji title in 15 years. (Read Full Story)
THE DROPPED CATCH THAT COST HYDERABAD THE MATCH
Karn Sharma was the star for Sunrisers Hyderabad with the ball against Royal Challengers Bangalore but the leg-spinner rues the 'tough' drop chance of AB de Villiers as he feels the wicket could have titled the match in his side's favour.
Chasing Sunrisers' 155 for six, De Villiers produced one of the most devastating Twenty20 innings as he smashed an unbeaten 89 from just 42 balls to single-handedly power RCB to a sensational four-wicket victory here last night.
The South African batsman, however, got a reprieve when he was on 30 as Karn dropped a tough chance at backward point off Irfan Pathan's bowling.
"If I had held on to that catch, maybe the game could have swung in our favour. But it is part and parcel of the game; at times you hold on to those and sometimes they don't stick to your hands," said Karn, who registered impressive figures of three for 17 from his four overs against RCB.
For Karn it was his "best performance" this season and the wickets of Chris Gayle, Rilee Rossouw and Yuvraj Singh made it more special. (Read Full Story)