MS Dhoni though has been a bit out of touch in this edition of the Indian Premier League but it seems that the former Indian skipper has found a good touch whenever he is up against Sunrisers Hyderabad.(Results | Fixtures | Points Table)
In the previous encounter too, Dhoni smashed an unbeaten match-winning half century when they hosted the David Warner-led side in Pune while in this match at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad, he once again came up with an innings that anchored his Pune franchise to a total that would have been defended.
Dhoni scored 31 runs off 21 balls but it was in the penultimate over when the right-handed batsman showed his masterclass.
One of the most sought after death bowlers, Bhuvneshwar Kumar was bowling the over but the Pune batsman didn’t show any mercy towards him. Dhoni first smashed two consecutive maximums during the course. The first one went off a short delivery from Kumar that was dispatched over the deep-square leg boundary while the second one was smashed over sweeper cover off an over-pitched delivery.
Steve Smith’s Pune posted a decent 148/8 in 20 overs after being left tottering at 105/5 at the end of the 16th over. Later, Dhoni chipped in with a good 31 to anchor his team to the total. In reply, Sunrisers Hyderabad never really looked settled against Rising Pune as the wickets kept falling at regular intervals for the hosts. Warner and Yuvraj Singh scored 40 and 47 respectively but their batting efforts were never enough to take Hyderabad go over the line. Only three batsmen managed to get into the double figures mark.
Later, in the last over Supergiant’s Jaydev Unadkat bagged a hat-trick while defending 13 runs. He first dismissed Bipul Sharma who was caught in the deep by Ben Stokes and then removed Rashid Khan and Bhuvneshwar Kumar on consecutive deliveries. The left-arm bowler during the process also scalped a fifer> Rising Pune Supergiant won the match by 12 runs.