Japiur, April 27 (IANS) The Australian combine of Shane Watson and James Faulkner steered Rajasthan Royals to an eight-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in their Indian Premier League match here Saturday.
Faulkner picked up the first five-wicket haul of the tournament in Hyderabad’s 144 for nine while Watson blasted 98 off 53 balls, helping the hosts overcome the target in 17.5 overs. Darreny Sammy’s maiden IPL fifty in vain after he led Hyderabad’s recovery from a precarious 29 for six.
The win was Rajasthan’s fifth one from eight attempts while Hyderabad suffered their fourth loss in nine matches.
Though Rajasthan had only managed 53 for one from the first 10 overs, the presence of Watson and Rahul Dravid (36) ensured calm in the middle.
Dravid’s dismissal left them 81 for two but it did not stop Watson from going ballistic.
Rajasthan were looking for that one big over to turn the tide in their favour and they got that when Watson took Ishant Sharma to the cleaners. The 15th over of the innings went for 20 runs, reducing the target to 36 runs off 30 balls.
From there on, Watson ensured the team gets over the line with ease. His blazing innings comprised 13 fours and four big hits and more importantly came in a winning cause. The all-rounder had struck the first hundred of IPL-6 against the Chennai Super Kings, who went on to win the close contest.
Earlier, Sammy with support from Amit Mishra (21) and Dale Steyn (18 not out) bailed his team out of serious trouble.
The West Indies skipper gave the innings a move on with some impressive strokeplay after Faulkner (5/20) and Ajit Chandila (2/13) wreaked have at the top of the order.
Sammy’s gutsy knock comprised eight fours and a six. He reached to his maiden IPL fifty with a flick that went for a four.
Steyn came up with the late burst, smacking Kevon Cooper for a six and couple of boundaries in the 20th over which went for 17 runs.