Hyderabad into playoffs
Defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad cruised into the Indian Premier League play-offs with an easy eight-wicket victory over Gujarat Lions riding on a throughly professional team performance.
After pacer Mohammed Siraz and Afghan leg-spinner Rashid Khan played a key role in dismissing Lions for a paltry 154 in 19.2 overs despite a century opening stand, skipper David Warner (69, 52 balls) and Vijay Shankar (63, 44 balls) anchored the chase to perfection with 11 balls to spare.
Sunrisers thus finished their league campaign with 17 points from 14 games.
Gujarat Lions' forgettable season after a questionable team composition for the better part of the tournament saw them finish the engagements at second last place with 8 points.
It was a 133-run third wicket stand between Warner and Tamil Nadu one-day captain Shankar that sealed the issue after Shikhar Dhawan (18) and Moises Henriques (4) were dismissed cheaply.
They never showed any urgency yet got their boundaries without ever letting the scoreboard pressure bother them. Warner hit nine boundaries while Shankar also smashed nine fours, matching his skipper stroke for stroke.
In fact, such was the ease that Sunrisers batsmen didn't hit a single six but the 23 boundaries were enough for their successful run chase.
Pradeep Sangwan was easy pickings for Shankar as the Sunrisers batsman hit him for some impressive pull shots whenever he pitched it short.
Leg spinner Ankit Soni (0/31 in 2.1 overs) -- one of the questionable selections this season -- was hammered whenever he pitched it short. Soni, who couldn't even make it to Mumbai U-23 squad, looked out of place throughout the tournament.
Fittingly, Warner disdainfully smashed him over his head to finish off the match.
In the day's other match Mumbai Indians cemented their place at the top of the table by beating Kolkata Knight Riders by 9 runs. Defeat saw Kolkata miss out on the number two spot and they remain in third position.
SCORES IN BRIEF
MUMBAI: 173 for 5 (Rayudu 63, Tiwary 52; Boult 2-30)
KOLKATA: 164 for8 (Pandey 33, Grandhomme 29; Pandya 2-22, Kumar 2-31)
Result: Mumbai won by 9 runs.
Player of the Match: AT Rayudu
GUJARAT: 154 all out in 19.2 overs (Smith 54, Kishan 61; Siraj 4-32, 3-34)
HYDERABAD: 158 for 2 in 18.1 overs (Warner 69 not out, Shankar 63 not out; Kumar 2-22)
Result: Hyderabad won by 8 wickets.
Player of the Match: Mohammed Siraj.