That was some class death bowling from Dre Russ to foil the prospects of a last-over heist. SRH were left with too much to do towards the end. Probably the target was too high on this pitch to begin with. But the efforts of Jonny Bairstow and Manish Pandey saw them make a good fist of it. Their partnership led an excellent recovery after losing a couple of quick wickets and kept them in the game. But the wicket of Bairstow from Cummins was the defining moment that took the steam off the chase. Maybe SRH could have sent Abdul Samad ahead of Vijay Shankar who can strike big maybe this move could have made a difference. Much credit to KKR’s batsmen today, especially Nitish Rana who took the bowling on from the get-go. Provided them an extra cushion of runs that came in handy.
Manish Pandey for SRH:
in wins: Avg 24.00 (2 X 50s)
in defeats: Avg 42.94 (8 X 50s)
David Warner | SRH (losing) captain: I didn’t think there were that many runs on this wicket. They adapted really well, had a good partnership. We failed to execute the first ball of most overs and then conceded a lot at the end. We lost early wickets, and Jonny and Manish got us in a good position, so we had our chances. The dew made a difference. If the bowlers overpitched, it was easy to hit it, and with the height in their team, and with the cross-seam, it stopped a little bit on us. We would like to have won the first game, but we have four more games at this venue and hopefully we will get used to the square and the dimensions of this ground.
Morgan: Delighted. Build up to the tournament has been pretty good. The camp that we had pre-tournament, the guys gelled well. Never quite sure what performance they will produce. Today was quite magnificent the way the guys batted. Guys at the top of the order. Nitish and Tripathi were absolutely outstanding and set up the game for our middle order to play in the manner we want to play. Certainly the bowling, we couldn’t have asked for a better start. Chopped and changed a bit in the powerplay. Wouldn’t say that (the stamp of Morgan in KKR’s performance today?). Huge amount of structure that goes into the decisions on the field. Have got a fantastic head coach in McCullum. Great back room staff. Main job is to get the best out of the squad. IPL is all about the results. Guys buying into what we want to do. Bhajji starting really well in the first over and then not playing a part but using his experience to get around the guys in the game shows the selflessness in the side. Nice to start like this it’s obviously a long tournament. We were very happy with the score. We thought if we bowled half-decently we should get over the line.
Nitish Rana is the player of the match.