IPL: 4th straight loss for defending champion Chennai
MUMBAI, India (AP) — Abhishek Sharma hit his first Indian Premier League half-century as Sunrisers Hyderabad kept last-place Chennai Super Kings winless after four games with an eight-wicket victory on Saturday.
Mumbai Indians also lost its fourth straight match with a seven-wicket defeat to Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Sharma’s brilliant 75 runs off 50 balls took Hyderabad to 155-2 with more than two overs to spare, while Rahul Tripathi smashed an unbeaten 39 off only 15 balls against a star-studded Chennai side.
Sharma and captain Kane Williamson (32) provided Hyderabad with a solid opening stand of 89 after Chennai had struggled earlier to reach 154-7 in its 20 overs.
“The ball held on the surface (but) we were able to build partnerships and Abhishek was terrific,” Williamson said. “The game always challenges you, everybody is trying to make contributions to the team.”
Williamson fell in the 13th over when he gave a simple catch in the covers before Tripathi upped the scoring rate in a rapid 56-run second-wicket stand.
Chris Jordan went for 34 in his three overs and Moeen Ali was taken out of the attack after only one over which went for 10 runs.
Sharma holed out in the deep off Dwayne Bravo with 10 required for victory and Tripathi earned Hyderabad its first points from three games with a boundary, leaving Chennai bottom of the table with zero points from four matches.
Earlier, Moeen top-scored with 48 off 35 as Chennai’s struggles with the bat continued. Spinner Washington Sundar produced impressive figures of 2-21.
“It’s with the ball that we are disappointed but we were 20-25 runs short,” Chennai skipper Ravindra Jadeja said. “We’ll talk about where we are lacking. We are professionals and need to work hard, stick together and come back stronger.”
At Pune, Bangalore joined the top four with a thumping victory against Mumbai.
Anuj Rawat (66) and Virat Kohli (48) anchored Bangalore to 152-3 with nine balls to spare as Mumbai joined Chennai at the bottom of the table.
Just like Chennai, Mumbai top-order batters have struggled in this year’s IPL with Bangalore restricting the five-time champion to 151-6 after choosing to field.
Suryakumar Yadav (68 not out) hit a second successive half-century to lift Mumbai’s total after Bangalore had claimed four wickets in 11 balls and Mumbai slipped to 62-5 in the 11th over.
Captain Rohit Sharma made 26 off 15 but his dismissal soon after the batting powerplay exposed the struggling Mumbai top order.
“We had gotten off to a 50-run (opening wicket) partnership, but I got out at the wrong time,” Rohit said. “That is hurting us a little bit … credit to Surya, but we knew it wasn’t going to be enough.”
Ishan Kishan made an unimpressive 26 off 28 before getting caught at third man while Tilak Varma was run out off a brilliant underarm direct throw from Glenn Maxwell.
Suryakumar then slammed six sixes in the last six overs and four boundaries to give Mumbai a glimmer of hope.
Rawat and Faf du Plessis contributed a cautious 50-run opening stand for Bangalore and then Kohli put the game beyond Mumbai’s reach by sharing a stand of 80 runs with Rawat.
Rawat hit six sixes and two fours before getting run out in the 17th over and South Africa’s leg-spinner Dewald Brevis had a dream start when he trapped Kohli leg before wicket off his first ball in the IPL before Maxwell sealed the match with two successive boundaries.
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