Jonny Bairstow played his final home game of IPL 2019 on Sunday (April 21) against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and gave a glorious farewell to the Hyderabad crowd. His 80 run knock from 43 balls propelled him to second in the race for the Orange Cap – well behind teammate David Warner. Bairstow closed things at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium with a four and twin sixes to seal the deal for SRH with nine wickets left and 30 balls to go.
Playing just his first IPL season, Bairstow took his run tally to 445 runs – most runs in an IPL season by a debutant. He could well add more to his tally when SRH play CSK on April 23. That would be the final game for Bairstow who will then head home to join his England teammates for the warm-up series for the World Cup.
Before this, Shreyas Iyer held the record for most runs in debut IPL season when he scored 439 runs for Delhi Daredevils in 2015. Faf du Plessis had scored 398 runs for CSK in 2012, Lendl Simmons had 394 runs for Mumbai Indians in 2014, Rahul Tripathi scored 391 runs for Rising Pune Supergiants in 2017 and Evin Lewis scored 382 runs last season for MI.
“So far it has gone well. To be in the top five leading run-scorers…it is really very pleasing. Hopefully, I can finish on a high in the next two games as well and we could be in the position to make the playoffs by the time I leave,” said Bairstow during a round table conference on the eve of the game against Kolkata Knight Riders.
“We get back after the Chennai game on April 23. Then we’ve got the World Cup camp. We then play Pakistan in the five-ODI series and then we’ve got two warm-up matches in which we play Afghanistan and Australia. And then we go into the World Cup.
“It’s a lot of cricket leading into the World Cup. And then we’ve got five Ashes Tests after that,” Bairstow told reporters.
England’s World Cup camp will be followed by a single ODI against Ireland on May 3 and then the limited overs series against Pakistan, which will see them play one T20I and five ODIs, commencing May 5.