Sharjah, Apr 27: Opener Aaron Finch hit a fighting 44-run knock before a splendid rearguard action propelled Sunrisers Hyderbad to a competitive 145 for five against Chennai Super Kings in an Indian Premier League Twenty20 cricket match, here today.
Stroke-making was difficult on the track at the Sharjah Stadium and Chennai bowlers had complete control over the proceedings until the last two overs during which they conceded 32 runs.
Hyderabad’s innings was built around Finch’s knock that came of 45 balls with five shots to the fence. The Australian batsman held the one end when wickets fell consistently from the other before departing in the fag end.
Finch added 52 runs for the third wicket with Lokesh Rahul (25) and had it not been for some lusty hits by Darren Sammy (23) and Karan Sharma (17) towards the end, Hyderabad would not have posted a decent total.
Sharma hammered paceman Ben Hilfenhaus for two sixes in the penultimate over and Sammy also succeeded in hitting a maximum off Mohit Sharma in the final over.
It was not the best of starts for Hyderabad as Hilfenhaus dismissed skipper Shikhar Dhawan (7) and David Warner (0) in space of three balls in the fifth over.
Dhawan attempted a pull but there was no force in the shot, which landed straight into the hands of Mithun Manhas at mid-wicket. Warner was unlucky to be adjudged leg before since the ball pitched outside leg and was hit too high on the pads of the Australian left-hander.
It was left to Finch, the hero of their last match, to repair the innings and he did not disappoint his side by combining well with young Karnataka batsman Rahul.
They timed the ball well, ran hard and hit the odd boundaries in between. Rahul hit Ravindra Jadeja for a massive six, which landed on the roof of the mid-wicket region.
CSK spinner R Ashwin though kept it tight from one end, giving away just seven runs in his two overs as Hyderabad were 65 for two at half-way stage.
Attempting to accelerate, Rahul went for a big shot but his pull off Dwayne Smith went straight to Ishwar Pandey.
Y Venugopal Rao (13) failed to contribute much and was dismissed by Mohit Sharma. Ashwin returned for his last spell and continued to bowl miserly, conceding just 17 runs in his quota of overs, albeit without a wicket.